turkish kurdistan

anonymous asked:

Turkey's borders are clear. There is no Kurdistan in Turkey. Diyerbakır is one of the Turkey's cities. We want to live together peacefully. Doesn't matter Kurd or Turk.

If borders were actually based on the populations they contain, the world would be a much better place. Turkey’s borders (and the Middle-East’s in general) are artificial and harmful. When the borders established by the Sykes-Picot treaty and the 1924 Treaty of Lausanne finally dissolve, you can be sure I will organise a party.

As of now, there are between 31 and 39 million of Kurds in the world. More than 20% of Turkish citizens are actually ethnic Kurds. They share a common language, common identity, cultural practices, history and have demonstrated again and again, throughout centuries and in every internationally recognised country they live in, that they want the right of self-determination. In other words, they have a consistent identity and strong claim. Centuries of Ottoman-forced assimilation, genocides or arabisation like Saddam and Assad sr. & jr. put in place, did not change that. The more you try to destroy an identity, the more people actually identify as such (i.e. Palestinians).

By the way, the right of nations to self-determination appears in the founding charter of the UN, whom I remind you, Turkey has signed.

Another point I would like to rant on, is the concept of countries. Countries are social constructs which change through space and time. It’s not because 2016 maps do not include Kurdistan that it will never happen (and it has already happened in the past). New countries and national identities constantly appear and old ones die. Constantly. Take a look at the world. The newest country is currently South Sudan (2011), that was five years ago. Following the fall of communism (1991), dozens of new countries appeared (i.e. Baltic, Caucasian and Central Asian states). The same thing happened after the dissolution of Yugoslavia. In Europe, the newest one is Kosovo (2008), not even ten year old. Hell, two different countries can actually join (i.e. West and East Germany reunification, unification of North and South Yemen). The European Union, albeit not a country nor a federation, is another new form of territorial organisation; the process is still going on. “Indian reservations” in the US are recognised as “domestic dependent nations”, aka countries within countries. Borders constantly change. To be short, your concept of countries is too rigid and does not correspond to reality.

Your pretense of "I don’t see Kurds and Turks” is the equivalent of sweeping dust under the carpet. The “Turkish identity” has and is being forced upon non-ethnic Turks in Turkey, may they be Kurds, Armenians or Assyrians. Only Greeks, Jews and Armenians are recognised in the Turkish constitution as minorities (there are dozens of ethnic/religious minorities in Turkey). You have 20% of your population that isn’t even officially recognised. Also, “turkishness” is being constantly forced upon Kurds through every institution of the state. I won’t get into details about all the genocidal and forced assimilation tentatives of the Turks against the Kurds, because honestly it would be too long.

I’ll just remind you that currently, Erdogan and his government, are closing down Kurdish cultural organisations, Kurdish newspapers, Kurdish TV and radio stations at home and abroad and Kurdish associations of any kind. Kurds who speak against the current purges are systematically arrested and tortured (good ol’ methods of the 80′s), then designated as terrorists conspiring against the state and thrown in prison. Google ‘Deniz Naki’, a Kurdish footballer who has just been indicted on ‘terrorist propaganda’ charges for sharing posts about the destruction of Kurdish cities and the death of civilians and militants on social media. 

Wow, you really are one? The Turkish state really wants peace? Will they prosecute those responsible for the Cizre basement massacres (civilian shelters deliberately set on fire by Turkish troops, with women and children inside), instead of protecting them? In your personal reality, maybe. So stop sweeping the dust under the carpet and maybe do something for the Kurds in Turkey, since you all want to live peacefully together.

P.S. Diyarbakir (Kurdish: Amed) is over three millennia old and has successively been under Semitic, Aramean, Assyrian, Urartu, Armenian, Persian (Achaemenids), Medes, Hellenistic (Seleucids), Parthian, “Corduenean”, Roman, Byzantine, Persian (Sassanids), Arab (Umayyads, Abbasids, Hamdanids, Buyids, Marwanids and others), Turkish (Seljuks), Turkmen (Artuqids), Kurdish (Ayyubids), Mongol (Ilkhanate), Turkish (Seljuks of Rum), Turkmen (various federations), Persian (Safavids), Turkish (Ottomans) control. Now it is under the control of the Turkish Republic. This list and its order are obviously approximative. Just to show you how demographics change. Nowadays, more than 70% of the population is estimated to be Kurdish.

Early morning street scene of Diyarbakir, the unofficial capital of Turkish Kurdistan. Although the Turkish government tries to force Kurds to conform to Turkish culture, Kurds now vigorously pursue their rights in such cities as Diyarbakir, Ed Kashi.


TURKEY. Bakur. Sirnak province. Cizîr/Cizre. March 2016.

(1) Fatma Tetik sits near a wall with threatening graffiti written by Turkish special forces. Her husband, Ali Tetik, was killed during fighting between Turkish special forces and the PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party).

(2) A child carries metal scraps in the ruins of Cizre.

(3) Mourners at a funeral for a victim of the clashes between the PKK and the Turkish Army.

(4) A family mourns the death of their 17-year-old son, Kasim, who was killed when the building he was in was destroyed by Turkish special forces.

(5) A man walks in the ruins of Cizre. The city was badly damaged during the clashes between Turkish security forces and the Kurdish PKK militants.

During the Kurdish-Turkish conflict (2015-present), in September 2015 Turkish security forces launched an operation in Cizre. According to a teacher from the district of Silopi, the tanks fired all day and people had nowhere left to hide and were left dying in their own homes.

On May 2016, the UN High Commissioner of Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein raised an alarm over violence against civilians and alleged human rights abuses in predominantly Kurdish south-east Turkey. He also raised concern over the Turkish government’s refusal to allow a UN team to conduct research in the area amid reports that more than a hundred people had burned to death in buildings surrounded by security forces. The Commissioner stated:

“More and more information has been emerging from a variety of credible sources about the actions of security forces in the town of Cizre during the extended curfew there from mid-December until early March,” he said in a press release. Most disturbing of all are the reports quoting witnesses and relatives in Cizre which suggest that more than 100 people were burned to death as they sheltered in three different basements that had been surrounded by security forces.”

Photographs: Emin Ozmen/Le Journal


Explosion outside soccer stadium in Istanbul

An offshoot of the militant Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) claimed responsibility on Sunday for twin bombings that killed 38 people and wounded 155 outside an Istanbul soccer stadium, an attack for which the Turkish government vowed vengeance.

The Kurdistan Freedom Hawks (TAK), which has claimed several other deadly attacks in Turkey this year, said in a statement on its website that it was behind Saturday night’s blasts, which shook a nation still trying to recover from a failed military coup and a number of bombings this year..

Saturday’s attacks took place near the Vodafone Arena, home to Istanbul’s Besiktas soccer team, about two hours after a match at the stadium and appeared to target police officers. The first was a car bomb outside the stadium, followed within a minute by a suicide bomb attack in an adjacent park.

TAK, which has claimed responsibility for an Ankara bombing that killed 37, is an offshoot of the PKK, which has carried out a violent, three-decade insurgency, mainly in Turkey’s largely Kurdish southeast. (Reuters)

Photo credits: Murad Sezer/Reuters (2), AP Photo, SEDAT SUNA/EPA, Daghan Kozanoglu/Getty Images, Osman Orsal/Reuters

See more photos from Istanbul and our other slideshows on Yahoo News.