The former PKK members were released by a court without being sentenced to prison terms under Article 221 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK), called the “active repentance” law. The article stipulates the release without punishment of members of terrorist organizations who turn themselves in, as long as they have not been involved in any armed clashes with security forces or attacks on civilians.
Two of the former members admitted that they joined the PKK by registering their names at BDP offices. Şoreş A., 20, said during a court hearing on Tuesday that he went to the BDP office in Yüksekova, a district in the southeastern province of Hakkari, and registered his name to join the PKK in 2011. After registering, he said he met with other PKK members and made a 14-day journey to the Avaşin camp in northern Iraq.
Servet A., 25, is another former PKK member who joined through a BDP channel in 2009. He told the court that he went to the Doğubayazıt district office of the BDP in Ağrı to register his name to join the group. That evening, he and five other people were taken by a PKK member by car from the BDP office to Mount Tendürek. He then traveled to northern Iraq to receive training in camps.