Final Declaration of the International Conference for Solidarity with
International Conference for Solidarity with Political Prisoners was
held at 24-25 May 2008 with the participation of the delegates of 12
countries, among them Palestine, West Sahara, Denmark, Italy, Spain,
India, Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, Turkey and Northern Kurdistan,
France and Iran. Over 150 participants attended the conference.
The conference started with the speech of the European Committee of
Solidarity with the Free Prisoners. The participants of the Conference
were ADDAMEER from Palestine, Proletarian Solidarity Association (ASP)
from Italy, AFAPREDESA from West Sahara (through a videoconference),
Labour Party of Iran (Toufan) from Iran, Netherlands and Germany
sections of International Committee Against Disappearances, Manik
Mukherjee in the name of SUCI, IAPSCC and AIAIF from India, Red Aid
France, International Red Aid, Red Aid Germany, Communist Party of
France (Maoist), Istanbul Branch of the Human Rights Association from
Turkey, Commission of the Families of Martyrs and Prisoners of the ESP
(Socialist Platform of the Oppressed) from Turkey and Northern
Kurdistan, AvEG-Kon (Confederation of the Oppressed Immigrants of
Europe), Psychiatrist Dr. Jean-Claude Métraux from
Switzerland, Pedagogue Umit Kosan from Germany, Kamil Agaoglu – Lawyer
of the 10 September Prisoners from Turkey, International Initiative
“Freedom for Abdullah Ocalan – Peace for Kurdistan” from Germany,
International Forum from Denmark, Persian Dialog from Germany,
Revolutionäre Aufbau from Switzerland, Red Aid from Spain,
International Red Aid Commission from Belgium, Federation of Immigrant
Workers of Germany (AGİF) from Germany, Federation of Immigrant Workers
of Switzerland (İGİF) from Switzerland, Cultural Association of the
Immigrant Workers from Turkey (ACTİT) from France, Cultural Association
of the Immigrant Workers (GİK-DER) from Great Britain, Collective of
the Oppressed Immigrants from Belgium, Maoist Communist Party from
Turkey and Northern Kurdistan. The participants presented papers on
their field of work to the conference.
Hatice Toraman whose son was disappeared by the state under police
custody, ex-hunger strikers who had joined the death fasts in 1996 and
2000 at the prisons of Turkey and Northern Kurdistan, and many
ex-prisoners who were imprisoned for many years in the past, attended
The conference was greeted through messages sent by various supporter
organisations that were not able to join at the conference for
different reasons. The prisoners who are accused for being members of
MLCP from Turkey and Northern Kurdistan, Ahmad Saadat in the name of
the Palestinian prisoners at Israeli prisons and also prisoners from
Italy and Switzerland participated at the conference through their
The conference organised by the European Committee of Solidarity with
Free Prisoners aimed at increasing the interest in the question of
prisons and the problems of the prisoners all over the world;
developing the consciousness international solidarity with political
prisoners and organising the solidarity; strengthening the relations
among the organisations that work on the question of prisons;
increasing the level of united struggle and activities in common among
these organisations; organising simultaneous campaigns and different
actions and activities and of acting in a manner coordinated on the
international level. There have been important discussions in the
conference with this purpose. The participating delegates discussed the
experiences of their own countries, the problems of the prisoners and
the tasks that are to be put forward. They stressed the international
importance and meaning of defending the political prisoners showing
solidarity with them. Through these discussions, the conference has
created an important energy and strengthened the participants.
The common results of the discussions in the conference are as follows:
· The question of prisons is not a local, regional or
national but an international question. Prisons on Islands, deportation
prisons, hidden CIA prisons located at aeroplanes are being
· The prisons are an area of the international class struggle.
· Even if the countries, cities and names of the prisons
are different, the isolation policy implemented in different prisons is
an international policy of the imperialists.
· The isolation policy is a part of the general attacks of
imperialists against the working class and the oppressed peoples.
· The isolation policy is an issue of self-reconstruction
concept of the imperialists.
· New isolation prisons are defined and lanced to the whole
world as “high security prisons” by the ruling ones all over the world.
These are symbolised in the prisons such as Stammheim, Meza, Evin, F
Type, Guantanamo, Libertet, Nafa, Imrali.
· The question of prisons and the problems of the prisoners are
not only a problem of those inside the prisons but more than that, of
those outside the prisons. These problems are the tasks falling upon
them. The struggle against isolation policy, repression and oppression
in prisons should not refer only to the prisoners.
· The question of prisons and problems of prisoners should not
be restricted to the relatives of prisoners.
· The prisoners all over the world have nearly the same
problems. They are becoming similiar from day to day.
· These problems belong to the whole society, the workers and
· Besides of the political side, the prisons and the problems of
being a prisoner consist also of family, health and juridical problems.
· Solidarity with the political prisoners is important.
Therefore, solidarity must consist of political actions and not
just remain as a topic just talked about.
· The interest and sensibility for the problems of prisons and
prisoners must be dealt with on the international level.
· The problems of the political prisoners and their families are
an important and special field of work within the struggle for
socialism and freedom.
· It is important that an own organisation is created for this
field of work.
· The relations of the organisations working on these issues in
different countries must be strengthened.
· The foundation of international relations between these
special organisations, collaboration, and the organisation of campaigns
at the same time must be paid importance to. Therefore, the foundation
of an international coordination should be targeted.
· On this perspective as a first step, an “Information Network”
should be founded.
· Creating a network intervening at emergent cases when there
are attacks against the prisoners in each single country will make this
struggle more powerful.
· The organisations that agree on this perspective may publish
an international Bulletin with a special period.
· Holding events like this conference must be considered as
important. They serve to create perspectives by arguing the problems of
collaboration and unity struggle.
· Solidarity with political prisoners should be concrete
and reply the solidarity call. It should consist of actions. These can
increase the capacity of collaboration.
The conference condemns the attacks against the textile workers in
Mahalla, Eygpt and greets the hunger strike of the imprisoned workers
as well as supports their struggle
The conference also declares its support of the general strike of the
Peruvian workers and labourers on 9th June and the strike of the union
Limter-Is at Tuzla Shipyards, Istanbul on 16th June,. The conference
calls upon for solidarity with these strikes and resistances.
The conference published a letter to the prisoners who were imprisoned
through the attacks of the reactionary, fascist regimes carried out
against workers and labourers in various countries. In the letter, the
resistance of the prisoners and their struggle was greeted and the
wishes for success expressed.
The conference has been a stage which united the voices and the forces
of the free prisoners, their families and their comrades, growing the
comradeship of international struggle.
Death fast strikers, international participant of the conference and
all others joint a demonstration because of the International Weeks of
Struggle Against Forced Disappearance. The voice of the prisoners was
raised on the struggle against those forces responsible for
At the conference, Hatice Toraman, who had displayed an important
support and struggle against forced disappearance, was handed over an
award by another relative of a disappeared for the 13th anniversary of
the 17-31 May International Weeks of the Struggle Against Forced
Disappearance. The conference ended with shouting international slogans.
International Conference for Solidarity with the Political Prisoners
24-25 May 2008, Cologne, Germany