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 Austria: Kurdish militants storm Vienna Turkish Airlines office

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Austria: Kurdish militants storm Vienna Turkish Airlines office  28.7.2012  

Riot police stand guard in front of a Turkish Airlines (THY) sales office during a protest at Taksim Square in Istanbul, June 1, 2012. Photo: Reuters
July 28, 2012

VIENNA,— A dozen Kurdish militants carrying banners on Friday briefly occupied the Turkish Airlines office in Vienna before police moved in, Austrian police said, AFP reported.

An airline employee used pepper spray as police officers were dealing with the incident. Medics later treated the Kurds and 15 officers.

Police detained the employee and the militants may face charges.

Rebels and militants backing their cause have targeted Turkish interests abroad for years.

A large Turkey's Kurdish community openly sympathise with the Kurdish PKK rebels.

Turkey refuses to recognize its Kurdish population as a distinct minority. It has allowed some cultural rights such as limited broadcasts in the Kurdish language and private Kurdish language courses with the prodding of the European Union, but Kurdish politicians say the measures fall short of their expectations.

The Kurdistan Workers' Party or PKK has several times proposed peaceful solutions regarding Kurdish problem, Turkey has always refused saying that it will not negotiate with “terrorists”.

Since it was established in 1984, the PKK has been fighting the Turkish state, which still denies the constitutional existence of Kurds, to establish a Kurdish state in the south east of the country.

But now its aim is the creation an autonomous region and more cultural rights for ethnic Kurds who constitute the greatest minority in Turkey, numbering more than 20 million.

The PKK wants constitutional recognition for the Kurds, regional self-governance and Kurdish-language education in schools.

PKK's demands included releasing PKK detainees, lifting the ban on education in Kurdish, paving the way for an autonomous democrat Kurdish system within Turkey, reducing pressure on the detained PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan, stopping military action against the Kurdish party and recomposing the Turkish constitution.

The PKK is considered as 'terrorist' organization by Ankara, U.S., the PKK continues to be on the blacklist list in EU despite court ruling which overturned a decision to place the Kurdish rebel group PKK and its political wing on the European Union's terror list.

Copyright ©, respective author or news agency, AFP | | Agencies


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