Published in May 2018 in the Netherlands: my book about my one year stay with the PKK. The title: This Fire Never Dies.
I decided to take on this journalistic project after I was expelled from Turkey because of my work on the Kurdish issue. My involuntary departure from Turkey and Kurdistan thus turned into a new journey.
The book is a continuation of my work in Turkey. There, I always preferred to talk to citizens, not to leaders. Inside the PKK, I did the same. I mainly talked to the ordinary fighters to get an insight into the movement and into their personal choices, dreams and aspirations.
I was the first independent journalist to stay with the PKK for such an extensive period of time. The PKK only demanded one thing of me: that I adhere to security instructions – which I wisely did. The result is a truly unique story of the movement that has increasingly shaped developments in Turkey and the wider Middle East the last couple of years. What does the PKK fight for? Why do so many women join the group? And what is the story of the underaged boys and girls in the PKK’s ranks? Will the fighters ever lay down their weapons?
The Dutch publisher is Het Spectrum. Yes, there will be an English translation, and most likely a Turkish and Kurdish one too. Any publishers interested in obtaining the rights to publish it in other languages can contact my literary agent, Sebes & Bisseling in Amsterdam.
This project is financially supported by the Dutch journalistic fund BJP, Fund for Special Journalistic Projects. I thank them wholeheartedly.