Omer Ozkizilcik: Fighting PKK finance most effective way to eradicate terrorism

In an interview on the PKK funding, Omer Ozkizilcik, a security expert at the SETA Institute in Turkey (a think tank close to the AKP and Recep Tayyip Erdogan), stated that the PKK  its branches are financed  by extortion and drug smuggle. He considers the fight against financial resources as the most effective way to weaken or eliminate this group. Mr. Ozkizilcik added on the PKK’s financial resources:

The PKK has different financial resources. Among them, the most important source of funding for the PKK is the production and distribution of drugs. The organization is active in the international drug trade. The group is involved in this criminal act from Afghanistan to Europe. The second and most important source of funding for the PKK is its presence in Europe. The Organization extorts businessmen, economic activists, workers, all Kurds living in Europe, and of course through force and intimidation. But I must say that, especially since 2014, the United States, the United Arab Emirates, and Saudi Arabia have also turned to be important sources of funding for the PKK in recent years.”

The expert added “For example, Saudi Arabia and the UAE have publicly acknowledged to have helped YPG in northern Syria, and this is not a secret, everybody knows it. They have helped (to confront Turkey as well as to divide Syria and oppose Iran). In fact, they send the money to the PKK this way. The UAE, in particular, is trying to provide serious financial assistance to the PKK. The UAE’s aims to destabilize the region. Of course, if documents are published, they will prove that the UAE has also helped the PKK directly. This is not surprising. But I must say that the pressure by the Turkish military attacks on the PKK has collapsed the PKK framework so extensively that such kind of financial aid also could not prevent the collapse of the Organization. The PKK can’t survive anymore.”


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