Weekly Report 24-31 August 2015

Kurdistan Diary

  • The forests surrounding the village of Gürkavak in the province of Yüksekova were bombed following the ‘human shield’ initiative that has been in place in Hakkari since the 17th of August.  A fire broke out in the region following the bombing.  The region was declared a ‘Special Security Region’ by the regional governorship. (24th August)
  • Operations are continuing to arrest and take into custody the newly-voted local administrators of the Kurdish provinces that have declared self-rule.  The Van Edremit Municipality Co-Chairperson Sevil Rojbin Çetin was arrested, taking the number of Co-Chairpersons of Kurdish provinces that have been arrested to six.  The number of party administrators and NGO workers arrested now stands at three.  Sara Kaya, Co-Chairperson of Nusaybin Municipality and the DBP (Democratic Regions Party) Regional Co-Chairperson Zeynep Algan were released without charge after having been taken to court on the 29th of August.
  • The Diyarbakır Regional Organisation of the DBP, Democratic Regions Party held a protest to draw attention to the developments unfolding in Silvan and Lice.  In their protest on the 25th of August, shutters of the towns’ shops were closed, roads were empty, bringing the city to a standstill.

Photo from Diyarbakır whilst the city was in a one day strike

  • Bureaucrats who were working in the Kurdish provinces at the end of the 1990’s when there were executions in the region, unsolved murders and people went missing whilst in detention, have returned to the region while the war has now been escalating again.  Ahmet Çınar and Seddar Yavuz who were district governors in the region in the 1990s have now been made provincial governors of Muş and Bitlis.
  • The curfew announced on the 24th of August by the provincial governorship in the county of Silvan, Diyarbakır has now been lifted.  With the lifting of the curfew six thousand people immediately migrated out of the county.
  • Following in the wake of violent clashes in Lice, Şemdinli, Silvan and Yüksekova, clashes have now broken out in Cizre on the 27th of August.  A bomb and rocket-launcher attack took place on Garnizon Command Post.  In the clashes four people were killed including two children aged 7 and 10.  Following the killings by police of these four people, two of whom were children, life ground to a halt in Cizre.  Health professionals stopped work and began a sit-in outside the hospital.  Thousands took to the streets to march in Yüksekova to protest the killing there of four people.

sit-in protest of health professionals

  • The American VICE News team were taken into custody by police on the 28th of August after filming the ‘life stands still’ protests in Silvan and Lice.

Vice News reporters who were taken into custody by police on the 28th of August

  • 16 year old Adem İrtegün was murdered by police as they attacked a protest organised by young people in Şırnak’s Yeşilyurt Neighbourhood.

Adem İrtegün who was murdered by police at the age of 16

  • Special Forces police killed one person by spraying their car with bullets as they drove to their home in Doğubayazıt on the night of the 27th August.
  • The self-defense movement known as the HPC that has been set up in Afrin Canton with the purpose of raising self-defense capacity of people has swelled in number to three thousand members.

  • Special Forces police killed a sixteen year old boy named Mazlum Turan during an operation which they mounted following an explosion in Kızıltepe, Mardin.

Mazlum Turan murdered by police at the age of 16

Turkey Diary

  • The flood in Hopa claimed eleven lives on the 24th of August.  Environmentalists and the  Association of Environmental Engineers of  TMMOB (union of chambers of turkish engineers and architects) declared that this flood could not be called as a natural disaster since it was caused by the hydroelectric plants and other constructions which had been located on wetlands, resulting in flooding.  The State’s neglect was protested in Istanbul and a great many other Turkish regions.  The people of Van and Diyarbakır sent aid as a gesture of solidarity with the people of Hopa.

Scene from Hopa after the flood, photo taken from BBC Türkçe

People protesting state’s neglect, capitalist construction projects ignoring nature in solidarity with Hopa.

  • An investigation has begun concerning Gendarme Lt.Col. Mehmet Alkan because of his statement at the funeral of his brother who was killed in the conflict.  Alkan stated, ‘Those who have spoken of a solution until recently, are now talking of war…’ and blamed the government. All around Turkey families of the soldiers who had lost their lives during total warfare of state protest the government, asking the state authorities to send their own sons to the war instead of the poor.

Mehmet Alkan accusing the government of his brother’s death at the funeral

  • A delegation of Turkish journalists, among whose number are executive officers from DISK (Confederation of Trade Unions of Turkey) Press Division, the TGS (The Union of Turkish Journalists) and the ÇGD (Association of Contemporary Journalists) has set off for the conflict region which is currently subject to a State of Emergency.  The delegation of 15 journalists which set off for Silvan and Lice on the 24th of August came face to face with and were threatened by a wing of the military replete with TOMA water cannons and armoured vehicles.  The delegation of journalists visited Cizre and Silop on the 25th of August before returning to Diyarbakır.  The delegation declared that there was not one house in the entire region that did not have traces of bullets upon it.
  • Refugees attempting to cross from Bodrum to the Greek island of Kos have been arrested by police.  Police detained the refugees and caged them in with metal barriers before subjecting them to torture. (August 28)

Eco Diary

  • Press statement was released on the 24th of August in front of the Governorship of Rize upon the call of Fırtına İnisiyatifi (Storm Initiative which is standing up against the building of road project which has once again re-started in Samistal valley with the guard of the Gendarmerie despite local people’s protests.)

Protest in front of Governorship of Rize

  • The peoples of the villages of Upper and Lower Hod in Artvin came together in a festival to protest against a cyanide-using gold mine planned to be built in the area.

Banner: We don’t want cyanide-using gold mine in our of village

  • The group, ‘Platform against the DOSAB (Demirtaş Organised Industrial Zone) Thermic Plant’ launched their first court case against a coal-fuelled thermic plant planned to be built in DOSAB area. (August 26)
  • Fifty-one thousand hectares of greenfield land, including some forest areas have been earmarked for touristic investment at Bolu.

Workers’ Diary

  • Three Kurdish workers were injured after being attacked by fascist groups who were incited to action by the AKP Municipality Governor in the province of Sarıcakaya, Eskişehir.
  • The sixth session of the third hearing of the court case against the 46 accused, eight of whom are in detention in relation to the Manisa’s Soma mining workplace murder took place in the Akhisar High Criminal Court.  During the case it had been put forward that the miners at Soma were being forced to carry out over-production and that the detained suspects were still being paid a salary. (August 26)

  • In the Ankara factory of ORS over five hundred workers were sacked after they demanded their gains achieved during the ‘Metal Strike’ days.  Upon the sackings the entire factory have commenced resistance. (August 28)

Resistence of workers in front of the factory of ORS in Ankara

  • The Union of Port Labour have declared that as of the 3rd of September they would go on strike organised in workforce sector 16 affiliated with the TCDD (Republic of Turkish State Railways) with workers at the ports of Haydarpaşa and Izmir and  Van Lake Ferryboat Headquarters.

Prisons Diary

  • The Chief Prosecutor of the Supreme Court of the Republic has ruled to suspend  one year prison sentence of Prosecutor Ali İhsan Demirel who was found guilty of ‘abusing his position’ by delaying the investigation into the murder of 12 prisoners at Bayrampaşa Jail where scores were also injured during the state’s terror operation known as ‘Operation Return to Life’.  In the operation, launched when revolutionaries resisted against the system of isolation in prisons,  32 people were killed in 20 prisons by a force of nearly 10,000 soldiers.  Despite fifteen years having passed since the operation, those responsible are still at large and are being protected by the judicial system.  The responsible parties, including the prosecutor who abused his position and axed the investigation, are being left unpunished.

Revolutionary prisoners were killed, burnt, executed, poisoned by chemicals in operations held in 20 prisons with 10,000 soldiers on December 19, 2000.

  • The alternately ongoing open hunger strike continues, commenced on the 15th of August by PKK and PJAK (Kurdistan Free Life Party) detainees in prisons of Turkey and Kurdistan, who protest the isolation of PKK Leader Abdullah Öcalan in jail, the fact that the bodies of martyred YPG/YPJ members are not being returned to their families and the fact that political genocide operations are being carried out at present in the country.  In support of this action MLKP and TKP/ML prisoners have also begun an alternately ongoing open hunger strike.  Torture and isolation of prisoners continue.  In the Burhaniye E Type Closed Prison political detainees Mehmet Adıyaman and Sinan Şimşek who began a hunger strike on the 15th of August have been taken into isolated cells and debared from vitamin B12 which is vital for hunger strikers. Political detainees in Malatya’s E Type Closed Prison who had begun a hunger strike have been beaten, says DBP (Democratic Regions Party) Malatya Provincial Co-Chairperson Polat Köse, who also revealed that detainee Gaffar Bayram suffered three broken ribs in the attack.  Köse declared that the findings regarding the policies of pressure and torture applied to political prisoners will be presented to Amnesty International.

Women’s Diary

  • Songül Ateş, a woman living in Antalya was killed by Hasan Bayraktar when she responded to his wife’s cries for help as she was being attacked by Bayraktar.  Upon hearing her neighbour Gülşen’s screams Songül Ateş ran to help her and was stabbed by Hasan Bayraktar.

Songül Ateş, another murdered woman among many in Turkey

  • Police arrested Figen Şahin, 25, as they were attacking a demonstration in the city of Adana. Turkish police sexually tortured a woman under arrest and threatened to share pictures of her genitals on Facebook, Figen Şahin testified on August 26.
  • Women activists have buried 35-year-old Güneş Kaynak, whose body was found in pieces in a garbage dump in Istanbul, in her native province of Elazığ.

Photo taken from http://jinha.com.tr/en

  • As the Turkish state increasingly resorts to violence against women and children in Kurdistan, women have started standing vigil in the streets of the Kurdish town of Cizre until the peace they want comes.

Photo taken from http://jinha.com.tr/en

Saturday Mothers/People

At the 544th week of the protest of the Saturday Mothers/People, 1st September’s World Peace Day and 30th August’s World Missing Persons’ Day were marked. Zübeyde Tepe, mother of one of Saturday People Ferhat Tepe spoke out against the war and current violence, saying, ‘There is a war in the Kurdish region of Turkey, Kurdish people are being murdered’.  Tepe declared that those guilty of killing the young people in the Kurdish regions are not able to be found, she said, ‘If there is justice, the guilty parties would be punished’.  Hüseyin Ocak, brother of Hasan Ocak demanded that the state, which has remained silent on the subject for so many years, should sign an international agreement on missing persons.


Yorum Bırakın

E-posta hesabınız yayımlanmayacak.