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26 February, 1999
The European Parliament recognized the international dimension of the Kurdish problem and the dangers it entails for peace and security in the region in a joint draft resolution, ratified by its plenum yesterday.
While expressing regret over the fact that European Union member-states failed to reach a timely agreement on the Ocalan case, the Europarliament also called on EU member-states to shape a common position on the Kurdish issue as soon as possible and for
Turkish authorities to commit themselves to pursuing a political solution to the issue, while making the same appeal to Kurdish organizations.
In the EU Parliament's view, a political solution to the Kurdish issue must include respect for the territorial integrity of Turkey, democratization and the strengthening of the society of citizens, recognition and the granting of guarantees for the rights (political, cultural, language and educational) of the Kurds, economic and social development in the region and free participation in the April elections for all existing democratic political parties, including HADEP, as well as an end to the harassment and imprisonment of their leaders.
On the question of Ocalan's trial, the Parliament expects the Turkish authorities to provide guarantees for humanitarian treatment for Ocalan, to ensure that a public and fair trial will be carried out and anticipate the presence of international observers at the trial.
Source: Athens News Agency