Imprisoned Kurdish Mayor in Turkey sends condolences to Barcelona Mayor
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region (Kurdistan 24) - The jailed co-mayor of the Kurdish city of Diyarbakir Gultan Kisanak on Tuesday sent her condolences to the Mayor of Catalonia's Barcelona Ada Colau whose city last week saw a series of attacks by Islamist militants that killed at least 15 civilians.
In a letter published on the website of Turkey's pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), Kisanak told Colau that she felt "deep sorrow" over the Islamic State-claimed (IS) vehicle ramming and stabbing attacks in Barcelona's touristic La Rambla street.
"As your city heals its wounds, I share your pain and want to state my belief that we will overcome the plague of terror by sticking to the values of humanity," Kisanak wrote from a prison in the Turkish city of Kocaeli, east of Istanbul.
The letter from Kisanak to Colau is not the first message of solidarity between the two women who represent two peoples with similar aspirations, namely Kurds and Catalans.
In June before a court postponed a planned trial session for Kisanak whose prosecutors asked for up to 230 years of jail, Colau called on Turkish authorities to release the Kurdish mayor.
"As the mayor of Barcelona and president [the United Cities] all support to the mayor of Diyarbakir. We demand Turkey to #FreeGultan," she tweeted.
United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), which also asked Ankara to free Kisanak, is a Catalonia-based organization for the advancement of self-governance and local administrations worldwide.
Turkish police units arrested Kisanak and her co-mayor Firat Anli in late October 2016 as a prelude to a massive crackdown that has seen the imprisonment of at least 80 other Kurdish mayors.
The arrested mayors' municipalities have also been seized by the Interior Ministry which appoints bureaucrats to the post of elected officials.
Attacks in Barcelona drew condemnation also from the Kurdistan Region of Iraq.
“The people of Kurdistan, who are victims of terror themselves and are at the forefront of the fight against terror, are sympathetic to the city of Barcelona,” said Kurdistan's President Masoud Barzani in a statement.
Another message of solidarity with Barcelona came from the US-backed Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) fighting to control the de facto IS capital of Raqqa in Syria.
In a video released by the YPG's press office, a Spanish volunteer fighter identified with the Kurdish nom de guerre as Siyar Santucho promises the defeat of the IS and revenge for victims in Barcelona.
"We are going to fight for them. We have been fighting for all the victims of this so-called caliphate here and everywhere in the world,” Santucho tells the camera in a location near Raqqa.
Editing by Ava Homa