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Ocalan silent as Kurds' fight for self-rule rages on

The Kurds fighting in Diyarbakir may end their revolt if ordered to do so by Abdullah Ocalan, but the Turkish government has not allowed the imprisoned Kurdish leader any visitors since April, perhaps calculating that the endless self-sacrifice being demanded of ordinary Kurds will turn them against the PKK.
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The cobbled alleys of Diyarbakir’s ancient Sur district are filled with shell casings and shattered glass. Black-masked teenagers touting Kalashnikovs and hand grenades mill around sandbag fortifications.

“We will defend our neighborhood till the last drop of our blood, till the revolution in Kurdistan is complete,” one of the youths told an Al-Monitor correspondent in Sur. That was on Dec. 11, when the Turkish authorities briefly eased a curfew that was slapped on six neighborhoods in Sur almost two weeks ago, allowing trapped residents to flee with the few possessions they managed to grab. “We are caught in the war. What else can we do? All we pray for now is peace,” said Remziye Kaya, a mother of six, as she hurried away with a small electrical stove.

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