Saturday, 12 December 2009

Highest Turkish Court Closes DTP


Democratic Society Party, the voice of Kurdish people in North Kurdistan was closed and banned on Friday 11 December 2009. The state basically told it's Kurdish citizens that democratic means will not bear fruit. The AKP and its supporters as well as the intelligentsia in Turkey were constantly talking about how things were going to be different this time and Kurds should stop being paranoid and trust the state and the AKP.

To date, Kurds have not had ONE single reason to trust the Turkish state. Closure of DTP has just confirmed Kurds' suspicions. So, how is this different? Where are those who were trying to get Kurds trust the oppressor? I hope closure of DTP has also served as a gentle reminder to Kurds in South Kurdistan.

Zaroken Roj must unite and rely on themselves and themselves alone. If there is to be peace, it has to be on Kurds' terms. Oppressors' compassion only dictates slavery.

Sunday, 4 October 2009

How Do The Turkish State's Terrorists Get Promoted?

A 14 year old Kurdish girl Ceylan Onkol was tending her sheep in a Kurdish village on the outskirts of Amed (Diyarbakir). She was hit by a missile or shell fired from a Turkish Military (TSK) garrison. She was hit in the groin area and blown into pieces. The public prosecutor didn't go to the area, neither did a doctor. It was a complete cover up of terrorism against children in Kurdistan, terrorism by the TSK.

Whenever the fascist state tries to protect its terrorists it uses the excuse of "the investigations are underway". How do you conduct investigations without following proper procedures beats me but that's another story. We want to high light something else. We want to know how many of the Turkish state terrorists have ended up behind bars because they torture and kill even children. Do you know what happened to the police officers who broke Cuneyt Ertus' arm? What happened to those who were captured in Şirnex (Şirnak) while planting bombs to kill civilians? What happened to TSK terrorist Col. Cemal Temizöz? Col. Temizöz is on trial for hundreds of extra judicial killings and torturing civilians. The prosecutor is asking for multiple times of life time sentences for him but guess what? He is still on duty.

We remember the Uğur Kaymaz incident. On Sunday 21 November 2004 a 12 year old Kurdish boy was killed by police officers. He was shot multiple times at point blank range from his back. On 18 June 2009, the High Tribunal Court ruled that the police who shot Ugur from his back have acted in self defence. The police chief Kemal Dönmez who was involved in murdering of Uğur Kaymaz was promoted. Kemal Dönmez was promoted despite his known ties to the Ergenekon terror organization of the terrorist state.

So, really, what happens after these investigations? These terrorists continue their jobs and receive promotions.

Before you try to talk about legitimacy of a terrorist state and blame the existence of Kurdish freedom fighters to justify the terrorist actions of the Turkish state, I recommend you read about the Dersim genocide and the Zilan massacre. Both of these happened way before the Kurdish freedom fighters were around.

Put yourself into the shoes of the family members or friends of those children and then answer this. Do you understand why Kurdish defence forces exist?

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Kurdish Cities Sustain the Highest Loss

Turkish Ministry of Defence has published the statistics of dead security forces. Oral Çalışlar recently wrote an article about it. Of course, the data wasn't published widely in Turkish media. The data presents which cities the dead security forces are from. It turns out that in terms of highest losses, six of the top ten cities are Kurdish. The security forces from Kurdish cities (Kurds) are sent to the front lines to fight the PKK. The fascist regime's policy of pitting Kurds against Kurds continues regardless. A Kurd is worthless to the state even if he sides with the state. Here is the data for top ten cities:


















City
Number of Dead Security Forces from the City
City Population (2007 census)

1. Şırnak (Şirnex)
302
416,001

2. İstanbul
284
12,573,836

3. Hakkâri (Colemerg)
264
246,469

4. Ankara
260
4,466,756

5. Diyarbakır (Amed)
233
1,460,714

6. Konya
203
1,959,082

7. Mardin (Mêrdîn)
199
745,778

8. Sivas (Sêwas)
198
638,464

9. Adana
186
2,006,650

10. Van (Wan)
177
979,671

Total
2,306
25,493,421

Total Number
of Killed Security Forces from the Kurdish
Cities in top 10 and sum of their populations:
1,373
4,487,097

Total
Number of Killed Security Forces from Non-Kurdish Cities in top 10 and sum of their populations:
933
21,006,324

Percentage of Losses from Kurdish Cities (in top 10)
59.54



For the top-10 cities which gave the highest loss of security forces, Kurds make up 60% of losses. I actually wouldn't be surprised if it was higher because we know there are millions of Kurds living in cities like Istanbul and Adana. Unfortunately the identity of security forces originating from those cities are not available to the man on the street but I am sure TSK takes their identities into considerations before deciding where to send those people. After all pitting Kurds against Kurds is one skill the fascist regime has mastered.

The data reveals more. We don't see the most racist and ultra right wing cities (where the thugs attack Kurdish civilians at any chance they get) in the top 10 above. What's going on here, really? Can it be that the fascist regime is actually trying everything to protect those worthless thugs by pushing Kurds to the front lines?

Sunday, 6 September 2009

Children Tried Under Charges of Terrorism

Although the state for whatever reason cannot kill Kurdish children as easy as it used to, now it is imprisoning children as terrorists. If you are a 12 year old who is in the vicinity of the events where other 12 year old kids throw stones at the armored vehicles who crushed their parents, well guess what? You or any other children, "guilty" of throwing a stone or not can be in prison for decades. That is, if they don't put you among ultra-right-wing prisoners who are in prison because of robbery, rape, extortion, etc. and have you killed by them. This is what happened to Yasin Akyüz, who was strangled to death and he was just 15 years old. Did the officials even find out who did it? I am sure they looked into the mirror.

Bianet has a recent piece on trying children as terrorists:
[...]

The Anti-Terrorism Law was effected in 1991 and renewed in 2006. It states that children aged between 12 and 18 years accused for terror should be detained, interrogated and tried under the same conditions as adults. Tilbe Saran and Murat Garipoğlu from the organization Civil Platform object to the law, warning that with every day that passes by another victim of the law is being added.
So the Kurdish children can be killed at their homes, have their villages razed, beaten, forced to migrate, and when they actually show some character, the state wants to destroy them in prisons. Here is the most "interesting part" of the article:
According to the group's information 127 children are currently detained. 3000 children are on trial but the Ministry of Justice does not confirm a precise figure.

[...]
The ministry of justice of a nation state does not confirm a precise figure on its OWN citizens who are on trial or in prison? Seriously, what kind of a state, mind you an "advanced democracy" are we talking about here?! Ministry of just-ice seems to be a better term considering the cold blooded murders it has been carrying against Kurdish people.

Sun will shine and ice will melt. Only then things will be just.

Sunday, 23 August 2009

The Zilan River Massacre: Part 2

This is Part 2 of the article on Zilan River Massacre that appeared in Gündem. You can read Part 1 on this blog as well.
Zilan River was filled with Corpses

Right after this massacre, the semi official newspaper of the state, Cumhuriyet daily, in its 16 July 1930 issue reported the massacre of Zîlan as below:

‘The villages of Agri that joined the bandits have been burned down and their residents were sent to Erciş. The number of bandits destroyed during the Zilan operation is over 15 thousand. The number of those who fell before a battalion and died is guessed to be over one thousand. Five brigands who made it to Zilan River surrendered. The war in this place has been very fierce. The Zilan river has filled up with corpses.’

Faik Bulut’s book titled ‘Kurdish Uprisings in Turkey’ which included some documents from the Archive of War History has also included the [Turkish] General Staff’s order dated 01 July 1930. The General Staff orders ‘All of the villages in the region of uprising that have participated in the uprising shall be completely burned down.’

Also, the General Staff’s order on 03 July 1930 says this: ‘… To show the people who rise up will be punished, the villages that participated in the Oramar events and the clans in the meadow must be identified and bombed with the air force.’

These documents [included in Faik Bulut’s book] further state that ‘On 02 July 1930 the following activities occured: Kaymaz, Haçan, Kölesor, Çilli ve Osmanlı villages were bombed by airplanes; the villages in the Patnos region that joined the uprising were subjected to machine gun fire and bombings.

According to the government of the time ‘The actions [by state officials and forces] in the uprising cannot be considered as criminal’. The region was a 'fire at will’ zone. The law number 1850 on 20 July 1931 approved this:

Item 1: During the uprising in Erciş, Zilan, Ağrı mountain regions and following that due to the tracking and punishment operations in the jurisdiction of First Public Controller and in Erzincan’s Pülümür town, from 20 June 1930 to 1 December 1930, any individual or group actions of the military forces, government employees, and anyone who acts with or for them, including watchmen, paramilitary [korucular], and regular citizens, related to getting rid of the uprising and events associated with it are not criminal.

Item 2: This law is in effect on the day of its publishing.

Item 3: The representatives of judiciary and internal matters are charged with the implementation of this law.

After the massacre, the Zilan River was declared a military zone closed to the public. After a while, a Government Farm was started there. Later, immigrants from Afghanistan, Turkmen, were brought and settled in the region. There are still villages in the region whose inhabitants are completely Turkmen.

The Zilan River is one of the most painful episodes of the painful struggle of Kurds. Thousands of people, from swaddled babies to old people were killed.

We believe that those who think they can finish Kurds by killing them have been wrong. Those who committed massacres after Zilan River, in Halepçe [Halabja], Qamişlo, Dersim, Lice, and other places and times, could not finish the Kurds’ struggle for freedom. Kurds, because of their struggle for freedom, have faced these massacres and paid heavy prices. Without a doubt, the sacrifices made by the Kurdish people will not be in vain and this people, in the end, will gain their freedom.


Sources:

İdris ERTAŞ - Tarihe Kazınmış Belgeler; Soykırımlar-III /
Ahmet Kahraman - Kürt İsyanları -
Tedip Ve Tenkil-
M. Remzi Bucak - Bir Kürt Aydınından İsmet İnönü'ye Mektup
Sıddık Güler - Dicle Haber Ajansı
Mehmet Ali Aslan - Kürt Trajedisi
There other eye witnesses who survived the massacre. Here is what another one says:
I think İsmet İnönü gave the order

Kakil Erdem, who is currently 94 and lives in Kündük village, was 17 years old at the time of the massacre. He is one of the few witnesses who survived. He goes on:

“The soldiers were stabbing pregnant women and cutting their babies out. I watched them behead people. They skinned heads of three of my relatives before my eyes. I saw them beating two brothers to death with wood.”

Erdem says when the massacre started, he ran towards the mountains and watched the events from where he hid. “Thousands of soldiers from the 7th Army Corps came to the villages. They surrounded the 72 villages in Zilan. They killed everyone in these villages; men, women, old, young, children, babies, everyone was killed. İbrahim Bey and Derviş Bey were commanding the unit. As they were killing people, we had to run and hide. Some people hid in the wheat fields and beneath their things. Then we all escaped to the mountains. We stayed hungry for days. We went back to the village after the soldiers left. They had killed 35 relatives of mine. I watched them beheading many people. My oldest brother is alive, he saw these too.”

Erdem responds to some allegations which say that the government of the time did not know about the events: “I think İsmet İnönü gave the order. Derviş Bey is father of Alparslan Türkeş. As I think of them, I get chills. I never forgot that massacre. They killed those they captured. Most of the people who died in this massacre were those who fought [side by side with Turks] in the war of independence. They had fought for this country. I did my military service in Sarıkamış. The people we fought together against the enemy later came and killed us.”
What kind of brotherhood is this?

Saturday, 22 August 2009

The Zilan River Massacre: Part 1

Below is Part 1 of the translation of the article appeared in Gündem. Many thanks to a Zarokek Roj (child of sun) who helped with the translation.
The Zilan River Turned Red

The Kurds, during the First World War at the beginning of 20th century, sent hundreds of thousands of Kurdish soldiers to fight side by side with Turks at every front Turks were fighting. Kurds did that to protect Islamic values, their freedom, and because they considered Turks brothers.

After the war was over, the response the Kurds have received were promises that were not kept [by the Turks], the splitting of their homeland into five pieces, the denial of their identity, and bans. In response to this injustice, uprisings break out at every corner of Kurdistan.

One of these uprisings is the one at Agri [Agirî]. After the Turkish state suppressed the Agri uprising, it started an all out annihilation campaign against Kurds at the Zilan River, in the Town of Erciş [Erdîş], Van [Wan] on 13 July 1930.

After the Agri uprising was over, the Kurds took refuge in the Zilan valley. The commander of the Army Corps, Salih Pasha, with the military operation, conducted a massacre against the Kurds taking refuge in the Zilan valley. The Zilan region was bombed with airplanes. The passages to the region get sealed off and tens of thousands of soldiers surrounded the region; the massacre began. From a new born baby to 90 year old elderly, people of all ages, male and female, were raked by machine guns and stabbed with bayonets.


The Bodies Rot

A total of 44 villages were set on fire and around 15 thousand people were tied to one another [and] massacred in the valley. A soldier who was part of the massacre tells the story:

“They made women, children, babies, everyone living in the region, thousands of people to get into the Zilan river. Then these people were surrounded by machine guns. They [the commanders] put us, the privates, on the machine guns. Behind us, there were corporals and sergeants who had their rifles aimed at us. Behind the corporals and sergeants, in the third row, there were commissioned officers waiting with their loaded pistols, ready to fire. If we didn’t fire, the noncommissioned officers were going to shoot us. If the noncommissioned officers didn’t shoot us, the commissioned officers were to shoot them and us. We pulled the triggers. Thousands of bullets spit fire on the people in the river. The horrible cries of women, children, old and young men echoed in the river. After a while the cries turned into moans. Then the moans ended too. Along with old and young men’s bodies, corpses of thousands of women, children, babies in swaddling clothes were left in the pool of blood. The corpses began to rot after a while.”


I was Under the Corpses

A few of the injured, fainted [and] remained under corpses. They survived. For years, they have been telling of this tragic story. Tayfun Susak, -he is known as Tayfunê Zîlan in Bulanik- tells the story:

“Soldiers under the command of Captain Derviş Bey [Captain Derviş Bey is father of Alpaslan Türkeş] attacked the seven villages on the Zilan River with the excuse that we were going to start an uprising. They started killing everyone. In a short time, bodies were all over the place. I fell when I was running. In a short while, I was under corpses. They thought I was dead. They piled corpses. I was under corpses. After the soldiers left, I came out. I was the only survivor in my family. My father, mother, and all my relatives were killed. Very few people survived. And those who survived, like me, they lost their sanity.”

Susak says he was arrested by the soldiers after the events. He continues: “Sometime later, the soldiers came back to the region and took the survivors to Muş, Agri, and Dogubeyazit. I was among them. We suffered hunger and torture in these places. Then I was made to care for soldiers’ livestock for a few years. After this, they took me to Elazig Mental Hospital. I stayed there for a long time. They were treating us like animals there. I suffered a lot in that hospital. After things got better in this area, they set us free. I wanted to go back to my village. When I went there, there was nothing left. Houses were destroyed too. So I came to Muş and settled in the town of Bulanik. Since I came here, I have been living on handouts.”
We shall not forget.

Read on to Part 2.

Friday, 17 July 2009

Newspaper Confiscated for Reporting Allegations of Police Rape

Court ordered confiscation of Azadîya Welat newspaper because it reported 10 claims of women being raped by the police in Amed since the arrival of new police chief to the city. The full story is here.

Kurds not only are not allowed to defend themselves they also cannot talk about the crimes committed against them by the fascist state's security forces. I am curious as to what happened to the animal who smashed a zarokê roj's head with the butt of his weapon or the thug who broke Cuneyt Ertus' arm. Perhaps it's time Kurds should assume the state's role in delivering justice since state doesn't seem to be capable of it.

Saturday, 20 June 2009

High Tribunal Court Approves of Killing Kurdish Children

On Sunday 21 November 2004 Ugur Kaymaz, a 12 years old child, was helping his father loading his lorry when the police shot both of them dead. His father was gunned down with 8 bullets. Ugur had 13 bullets in his body. The child was repeatedly shot from his back at very close range. Nine bullets entered his little body through his back. The fact that Ugur was shot from very close range was documented by forensics doctors of the Judiciary.

On 18 June 2009, the High Trubinal Court ruled that the police who shot Ugur from his back together with his father have acted in self defense. How is it acting in self defense, let alone being justifiable by any means, to shoot a child from behind at close range with 13 bullets? What kind of "law" would allow and tolerate such abomination?

Think again... Is PKK really a terrorist organization? Don't you think the real terrorist is the Turkish state that shoots Kurdish children from behind, breaks their arms, smashes their skulls with butt of a weapon, tries and imprisons them as adults, AND sees such abomination justifiable?

The Turkish state is determined that it will either assimilate Kurdish children or annihilate them.

I have a question for those people who insist the PKK should lay down arms unconditionally. Are they willing to protect these children if the Kurdish defence forces lay down their arms? I didn't think so.

Friday, 19 June 2009

More DTP Members Detained

While the Terrorist Turkish State and its supporters keep insisting the PKK should lay down arms and Kurds should "seek for their rights in parliament" the party of Kurds is under constant attack. I suppose what the fascist state and its supporters are saying to Kurds is "seek for your rights from the prisons". 19 More DTP members were detained on 18 June 2009. The full story is in Bianet:

On 14 April, members of the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party (DTP) were taken into custody. Since then, around 500 party members have been taken into custody and 267 have been arrested.

During operations in the provinces of Diyarbakır, Şırnak, Bitlis, Batman and Mardin, all in the southeast of Turkey on 17 June, 19 people were taken into police custody. Among them are municipal officials and academics.

The AKPasha Inc (which is having yet another crisis these says) is keeping on detaining key DTP figures. They are going to have to build more prisons because the ranks are being filled as we speak. Each time pashas and mullahs have a problem in their marriage, they attack Kurds. I say it's enough, Kurds shouldn't save the day for these thugs anymore.

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

State Disciplines Kurdish Children in Prison

Turkey has found a way to educate the Kurdish children. Zaroken Roj (The Children of Sun) are now being educated and disciplined in the prisons. They are tried as adults and subjected to adult sentences. Then the Turkish State and it's brain washed servants wonder why in the earth Kurds still won't feel as part of the state. Afterall the present Turkish state is a terrosit state and Kurds don't condone terrorism. The following article written on 22 April 2009, recently appreaded in Bianet.
[...]
The judges Menderes Yılmaz, Selahaddin Menteş and Ömer Adil Küçük hand down the sentences. Three children are convicted of "taking part in activities in the name of a terrorist organisation without being members of the organisation." This means they receive a sentence "as if" they were members: 6 years 11 months. Another child is also accused of spreading organisational propaganda and violating the law on demonstrations, leading to a sentence of 7 years and 5 months. The two children tried without detention receive a 10-month sentence each for violating the law on demonstrations. This is converted into a fine.
[..]

"Terrorism" and children

According to Article 250 of the Criminal Procedure Code, ratified in 2004, the State Security Courts were abolished and replaced by heavy penal courts with special authorities. These courts would deal with certain crimes. When the Anti-Terrorism Law was amended in June 2006, these special courts were given the authority to try children aged over 15 for crimes defined by this law.

An amendment to Article 13 of the Anti-Terrorism Law meant that sentences handed down to children aged over 15 could not be converted into other punishments or suspended. This meant that the Anti-Terrorism Law and the Criminal Procedure Code started treating children over 15 years old not as children, but allowing their trial and punishment just like adults.

Diyarbakır laws

When, after Öcalan's capture in 1999, fighting stopped, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), which came to power in 2002, seemed to offer a solution to the Kurdish question with a series of reforms aimed at attaining membership in the European Union through democraticisation. However, by 2006, the government seemed to have taken steps backwards even from those limited reforms. It had become clear that it would not make any efforts in the recognition of the Kurdish question or in a discussion of a solution with Kurds.

The changes in the Anti-Terrorism Law came after events in Diyarbakır on 28 March 2006, when the police started shooting into a crowd of thousands of people in a funeral procession for four PKK members. Within five days, ten people died, five of them children. Hundreds of people were taken into custody.

When MPs discussed allowing the trial of 15 to 18-year-olds as adults, they assumed that they could prevent them from joining the PKK. The expected reforms from the government did not happen, and it was clear that it would turn to violence, not sparing children.

Hundreds of children detained, tried, convicted

And this is what happened. Answering the motion of DTP MP Selahattin Demirtaş, Minister of Justice Mehmet Ali Şahin (who left office on 1 May) told parliament that 13 children aged 12-15 and 724 children aged 15-18 had been put on trial under the Anti-Terrorism Law in 2006 and 2007. 319 of them were being tried in Diyarbakır courts. A total of 120 children were convicted under this law in the two years, 88 of them in Diyarbakır.

During the same period, 422 children were put on trial for "founding an organisation with the aim of committing crimes", following Article 220 of the Turkish Penal Code. 107 of these children were in Diyarbakır. In two cases in Diyarbakır, 20 children were convicted. 413 more children, 268 of them in Diyarbakır, were put on trial under Article 314 of the Turkish Penal Code, for "membership in an armed organisation." 34 chidren, 28 of them in Diyarbakır, were convicted. Hundreds of children were handed down punishments with probation, a few were also acquitted.

The number of children affected grew in 2008 and 2009. For instance, a child was crushed by a police tank in Cizre in February 2008 and died. His friends, who took part in his funeral, were arrested. Children took part in Newroz celebrations, demonstrations to mark the birthday of Öcalan, funerals of PKK members or other protests concerning the Kurdish question; the police did not hesitate to act violently and to take them into custody.

[...]

After Adana, Diyarbakır...

According to the Adana branch of the Human Rights Association (İHD), 33 children have received a total of 129 years imprisonment for "membership in a terrorist organisation" in the first three months of this year. Now the Diyarbakır court has started handing down sentences. Lawyers fear that if the Supreme Court of Appeals does not take a different stance and ratifies the decrees, hundreds of children will spend a long time in prison.

Meanwhile, rights activists lobbying for children's rights have intensified. Many journalists have reacted to the issue in the media. The Call for Justice for Children gathered around 900 signatures in Istanbul, and the Justice for Children Initiative has united rights activists in Ankara, Izmir and Diyarbakır and the families of the children concerned. They continue to monitor cases and struggle for change.

During a visit of these activists to parliament in February, MPs from the AKP and the opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) promised to bring up necessary legal changes after the local elections. However, judging by the police operation against the DTP and statements by ministers and the Prime Minister, it seems that the attitude of the government towards the Kurdish question has not changed since the local elections, if it has not become more hardened. Today's 23 April, the "Festival of National Sovereignty and Children" shows those Kurdish children who dare go into the streets, the meaning of "National Sovereignty."
My previous post contained the following in it:
"I became more aware," says the 16-year-old boy, who asked not to be named because of his upcoming court case, where he could face seven years in prison if convicted.
The Prime Minister recently announced that they may lift the ban on speaking in Kurdish in the prisons. So it seems education in mother tongue will be possible in the prison.

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Obama's Advanced Democracy: In Turkey, hundreds of minors imprisoned on 'terrorism' charges

This article appeared in CS Monitor:

In Turkey, hundreds of minors imprisoned on 'terrorism' charges
The 2006 antiterror law makes it a crime to take part in demonstrations supporting the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
By Yigal Schleifer | Correspondent of The Christian Science Monitor

Diyarbakir, Turkey - Few would peg Hebun Akkaya, a 17-year-old with a high, nasal voice and polite manner, as a criminal convicted of supporting a terrorist organization.

But the criminal court here in Diyarbakir did. The crime: protesting the prison conditions of Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed head of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). Designated a terrorist organization by the European Union and United States, the PKK enjoys grass-roots support among citizens here in Turkey's predominately Kurdish southeast.

"I never thought I could go to prison for throwing a stone," says Hebun, who spent 10 months in an adult prison awaiting his initial trial. "I become really angry when I think that just for throwing a stone they were asking to put me away for 28 years. It's unjust." Now out on bail pending an appeal, he faces an amended sentence of seven years.

Hebun is one of hundreds of minors, some as young as 13, who have been arrested and jailed in Turkey over the past few years under strict new antiterrorism laws that allow for juveniles to be tried as adults and even be accused of "committing crimes in the name of a terrorist organization" for participating in demonstrations. Critics and rights defenders say the amended antiterrorism laws are deeply flawed and also violate international conventions on the detention of children.

"There is a lack of proportionality between the crime and the sentence," says Emma Sinclair-Webb, Turkey researcher for the New York-based watchdog group Human Rights Watch. "Counting what these children do, such as throwing stones or damaging property, as a terrorism offense is a problem."

"You are subject to a court system that doesn't see you as a child," adds Ms. Sinclair-Webb.

Over 1,500 minors prosecuted under antiterror law

As part of its European Union membership drive, Turkey has updated its penal code to more closely reflect European and international standards. But observers say the country took a step backward with a 2006 amendment to the country's antiterror law that made it possible to try minors between the ages of 15 and 18 as adults when the crime is deemed to involve terrorism.

That same year, Turkey's Supreme Court of Appeals ruled that children taking part in demonstrations supported by the PKK could be charged with aiding or acting in the name of the organization.

According to Turkish officials, 1,572 minors were prosecuted under the antiterror law and 174 of them were convicted during 2006 and 2007. Hundreds more court cases against minors have been launched since then.

"The court's decision is very dangerous for the rule of law and for individual freedoms," says Tahir Elci, a Diyarbakir lawyer who is defending several of the jailed children. "According to the high court's decision, prosecutors don't need evidence to claim that somebody committed crimes on behalf of the PKK. Just participating in a demonstration is evidence enough.

"We accept that these kids may have thrown stones, but they didn't do it in the name of the PKK," he adds. "They are children."

Turkish policy conflicts with UN, EU

The 1989 United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child deals specifically with the issue of the arrest and imprisonment of minors. According to the convention, which Turkey has signed on to, "The arrest, detention, or imprisonment of a child shall be in conformity with the law and shall be used only as a measure of last resort and for the shortest appropriate period of time."

A European Union official in Ankara says the arrest and imprisonment of minors is a cause for "concern."

The official, who asked not to be named because of the sensitivity of the issue, added, "They are not being treated as juveniles, and that is against international conventions. They are being treated as terrorists, and they are not even aware of what they have done."

Brussels has previously expressed concern about what it sees as deficiencies in Turkey's juvenile court system. An EU report last fall on Turkey's progress as a candidate country stated, "Despite some progress in the juvenile justice system, the number of child courts is still inadequate, there is a lack of social workers in these courts and their workload is heavy."

In Adana, for example, the lack of juvenile justice facilities has meant that even children under the age of 15, who by law were supposed to be tried in juvenile court, ended up having their court cases heard in an adult court.

For one boy, jail prompted 'awakening' to PKK views

Turkish prosecutors have defended the heavy sentences given to the children arrested in protests, saying they are a response to an effort by the PKK to mobilize Kurdish youth against the state.

But Sinclair-Webb, of Human Rights Watch, says that sending children off to jail could backfire.

"It's a very hardening process for children and psychologically very damaging," she says. "If you go in as a child who was just having a lark throwing some stones, you may come out as a full-fledged militant.

"If you are trying to win hearts and minds and get people to not join the PKK, this is not the way to do it," she adds.

One teenager, imprisoned for 13 months after participating in a demonstration and now out on bail while he awaits trial, says he was "changed" by his experience in jail.

"I became more aware," says the 16-year-old boy, who asked not to be named because of his upcoming court case, where he could face seven years in prison if convicted.

"The things I learned in prison about myself, about the Kurds, about the PKK, it was like an awakening."
Do I really need to add anything?!

Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Main Characteristics of the Regime --III

Dr. İsmail Beşikçi has written a nice article at Kurdistan Post which analyzes the double standard put in place against the Children of the Sun. The article makes good points on Fethullah Gülen's role in assimilating Kurdish children and how state supports his activities. Here is the relevant parts of the article translated for your pleasure:
Main Characteristics of the Regime --III

"The twelfth wave"

As part of the Ergenekon investigations, on 13 April 2009, some individuals were detained. The detained included some university presidents (current and retired) and some NGO workers. Some professors' homes were searched. Home of Prof. Dr.Türkan Saylan, the president of Association in Support of Modern Living (ASML), was searched and some documents were confiscated. Tijen Mergen, who administers "Father, Send me to School" campaign in Milliyet daily, was detained. Tijen Mergen, who is on the Board of Management for Dogan Holding, was released a few days later. ASML was searched, some documents were confiscated. CEO Gülseven Yaşar was nowhere to be found.

When we look at the Turkish press after 12 April, we see a great deal of support for those detained as part of the Ergenekon investigations. Starting 14 April 2009, there have been systematic detentions and arrests of Democratic Society Party (DTP) managers, members, and sympathizers. With raids in different cities, over 300 people associated with or sympathizing with DTP were detained, over 150 were arrested [the number of people detained so far is over 400]. While Turkish press showed great interest in those arrested for Ergenekon investigation, it didn't show any interest in DTP. It was stressed in the press that the Ergenekon detainees were under pressure and the operation unfair. The injustice done to DTP was overlooked, nobody spoke of it. It's clear that there is discrimination among the two cases [Ergenekon and the recent detainment and arrest of DTP-related individuals].

Articles praising President of ASML Dr. Türkan Saylan, "Father, Send me to School" campaign manager Tijen Mergen, and Gülseven Yaşar. The articles described how these individuals helped the needy families and provided scholarships for students. It was told "Ms. Türkan didn't deserve this". Dr. Saylan's poor health was brought up to discredit detainment of these ladies further.

In this article, I would like to touch on a subject the Turkish press didn't mention and tried to hide with diligence. The real intention of ASML, "Father, Send me to School" and "Girls Let's Go to School" campaigns, Multi Purpose Community Centre (MPCC), and Modern Education Association (MEA) can only be understood when these organizations and activities are considered within the context of the Kurdish Question. The Turkish press, Turkish intelligentsia mentions of people who work at such organizations as "modern" and "humane". The main purpose of these organizations and activities is to assimilate Kurdish girls into Turkishness. The understanding is that 'mother tongue is learnt from the mother. Therefore it's more important to assimilate the Kurdish girls who are future mothers'. This is the main reason why these organizations focus more on Kurdish girls. Assimilation is the main reason for the dormitories built for girls at Regional Boarding Primary Schools (RBPS) located in Kurdish regions.

It is a known fact that these efforts have support and collaboration from militarist organizations and entities and Turkish Industry and Businessmen Association (TIBA). There is no collaboration with Human rights' organizations or entities. These issues were analysed in an article titled "What is ASML Giving to Kurds?", which appeared in Kurdistan-post on 19 March 2008.

During the last 25 years, one of the important realities of Kurdish geography has been involving burning of houses, razing of villages, and destruction of sources of income [by the state]. People have been forced to leave their home and made homeless.

[Similar events have been at play for the border villages of South Kurdistan. Iran and Turkey have been constantly bombing the border villages and destroying livestock, farms, and infrastructure.]

The "unsolved homicides" have been an important and continuous phenomenon as well. The Gendarmerie Intelligence and Anti-Terror Unit (JITEM) has kidnapped and killed young Kurdish people, Kurdish villagers, traders, business men, etc. JITEM killed Kurds with torture, put their bodies in mass graves, throw into wells, destroyed in acid wells or incinerated them. It's stressed that number of such murders is over 17,000.

Neither any of the organizations like ASML, MPCC, MEA, etc. nor any of their workers has had the smallest criticism of state forces for the atrocities being committed against Kurds. They won't let such news [news related to persecution of Kurds by state forces] appear on their Internet sites or in the press. The systematic persecution of Kurds is ignored. The attention is given to the children of the families who are made homeless, poor, and in need of help. This attention is a requirement for applicability of assimilation policies; it's a necessity of the assimilation policies.

In the last few years, 7 & 8-year-old Kurdish children have been detained, tortured, arrested, and put into prisons because they throw stones at the police and armoured vehicles. They are tried for 25-year sentences. They are not tried at the children's court; with a modification in the anti-terror law, it is made possible to try the children who throw stones at police or armoured vehicles as adults. These children are placed into adult prisons. Even 6-year-old Kurdish children are detained and tortured. In Diyarbakir [Amed], Van [Wan], Batman [Êlih], Adana, and Mersin there are close to 300 children ages 8-15 who are already in prison and being tried. None of the organizations like ASML, MPCC, MEA, etc. has said anything about children being detained, tortured, put in prison, or tried [as adults]. These organizations [ASML etc] and people who work for them find the persecution policies against children as positive.

Considering the environment in which these children live, these actions [throwing stones at the police and armoured vehicles] could be considered as freedom of expression. These children's family homes have been incinerated and villages destroyed. They don't have a healthy life in the suburbs of cities where they live. No job, no food, no health services, no education... Security forces constantly curse at these children's parents and belittle them. Children's homes are raided often, mother, father, older brother, grandfather, etc, are harassed. Under these conditions, it should be accepted as natural that these children are angry at the police and express their anger by throw stones at the police.

[...]

Humanization

To be human, humanization, is an important goal for every individual, every society. How does one become human? How is humanization achieved? The basic indication of humanization, the main criteria of a human, is the way he treats others. Let's remember Bulgaria in 1985-1988. Bulgaria was pressuring its Turks to change their names. Turks were being told "if you change your name and get a Bulgarian name, you will have a chance to advance in Bulgarian Communist Part and in Bulgarian government. Otherwise you will face heavy difficulties...". Bulgaria's actions faced heavy criticism and blame in Turkey from the state, government, press, universities, and NGOs. Bulgarian authorities were blamed with being imperialist, colonialist, primitive, assimilating, backwards and fascist. Of course, the policy Bulgaria had in place for Turks was to assimilate Turks into being Bulgarians. This was causing big reactions in Turkey. Humanization shows itself right at this point. Organizations like ASML, "Father, Send me to School" and "Girls Let's Go to School" campaigns, MPCC, MEA, and people who work for them were forcefully against the process of assimilating Turks in Bulgaria but they voluntarily implement Turkish state's assimilation policies against Kurds. That's why, here, a process against humanization exists. It's obvious that this is a primitive and backwards process.

[...]

Destroying villages and sources of income, "unsolved" murders, hundreds of thousands of people being forced to leave their homes, denial of Kurdish identity, and assimilation policies, without a doubt, aim to destroy the Kurdish community and Kurdish national values. It goes without a doubt that these actions and policies have made life difficult for Kurds and hurt the Kurdish nation. However, it has to be stressed that these practices have been hurting Turkish society and Turkish community values as well. Propositions planned and put in place to destroy the Kurdish community are in fact destroying the Turkish communal values. Turkish universities and press are mouldering away. Hiding and twisting the facts about Kurdish question becomes academia's main purpose. Hiding the facts and events has turned into being main function of the press. JITEM bombed a book store on 9 November 2005. The perpetrators were caught at the scene. We know how the events developed after that. [the military made sure the bombers are set free.]

Firing the prosecutor who filed charges against these bombing suspects who were members of JITEM, Van [Wan] Court sentencing each of these perpetrators to 39 years in prison... Supreme court's voiding of these sentences and the case being forwarded to the military court... Military supreme court's letting these suspects walk away in one sitting...

What do such opposite interpretations of law between military and civilian courts show? It shows rotting of judicial organizations. Yasin Hayal, the person who had a major role in murder of Hirat Dink, was sentenced to three years in Trabzon because he bombed a work place. In Diyarbajir [Amed], the children who throw stones to police and armoured vehicles are being tried for 25 year sentences. These are indications of a rotten judicial system. It's known that the Turkish press generously praises the Palestinian children who throw stones at Israeli soldiers and tanks. Those children and their parents are praised constantly. When Kurdish children do the same, then it becomes "who is turning these children against us?". Having such double standard in thinking is nothing but a rotting of the conscience.

Kurdish Renaissance

The Turkish state, for the sake of destroying and assimilating the Kurds, is letting the main organizations of the state such as judiciary, education, and press go rotten. However, despite all these persecutions, the Kurds are still standing. In fact, Kurds are living a Renaissance today.

How is it that Kurds are living a Renaissance? There has been some criticism directed to Prof. Türkan Saylan from some right wing individuals who are close to Fethullah Gülen. These individuals blame Prof. Saylan with being a missionary and providing scholarship to PKK members. The perspective of these right wing individuals on the Kurdish question is similar to that of state's. Especially, Gülen's followers are trying to promote and spread Turkishness in Kurdish regions under the disguise of "religious and spiritual values". Just like how Kurdish is forbidden to children who are taken away from their families and sent to RBPS, Kurdish is forbidden in the Kur'an schools organized by Fethullah Gülen's followers. Spreading Kur'an schools in the region [Kurdish] is state's policy. Children who attend to these Kur'an schools stay at dormitories. While the state objects Kur'an schools and Islamic movements in the west [of Turkey], it encourages both in the Kurdish regions. State's policy is "to leave Kurds behind, to melt Kurdish demands within religious movements". That's why as far as Kurdish question is concerned, there is a great deal of similarity between Kemalism's Turkishness, which is disguised in 'education' and the Turkishness disguised in 'religious and spiritual values'. However, one can say that Fethullah Gülen's followers have a relatively more humane approach to the Kurdish question than Kemalists.

Rasim Ozan Kütahyalı, published an article titled “Fethullah Gülen and Abdullah Öcalan” in Taraf daily on 22 April 2009. The author says that both Fethullah Gülen and Abdullah Öcalan have support of masses in Turkey and the state and the public need to get used to the fact. This is not a complete view, however. Fethullah Gülen and Abdullah Öcalan are not in the same situation. The line Fethullah Gülen represents against Kurds and the Kurdish question is the line mobilized by the state and the deep state. The state is able to use anyone, any organization, any opportunity, and any means to weaken Kurds, Kurdish movement, and PKK. Left wing, right wing, liberals, religious movements, etc. It's a known fact that Hizbullah [in Turkey] was established by the state to fight PKK, in fact, the patriotic Kurds in the cities. [it seems now the state has openly assumed the role Turkish Hizbullah assumed in the past]. It's also a known fact that Fethullah Gülen's followers have distorted and published incomplete versions of Said-i Kurdi's writings about Kurds. [Said-i Kurdi, also known as Said-i Nursi was a Kurdish Imam who authored the books which Gülen movement republished distorted versions (all references to Kurds and Kurdishness have been removed or altered into Turks and Turkishness). These distorted books are used by the Gülen's movement for religious education]. No doubt, there are Kurds who publish Said-i Kurdi's writings without distortions and criticize the Gülen movement for their anti-Kurd stand.

I have stated above that Gülen's followers take advantage of Kurds' situation and accumulate Kurdish children into Kur'an schools and forbid them Kurdish language, make an effort to raise these children in an environment with Turkish language and culture. The clergy against these impositions are defending Kurdish language and culture. Despite all oppression, great interest in Kurdish language and culture is building among workers, traders, young people, students, clergy, women, and villagers. This can be considered as a Renaissance. There is no way this process can be stopped either. In this context, for sure there will be efforts to develop a consciousness of homeland.

[...]

İsmail Beşikçi
Amazed?

Saturday, 9 May 2009

Village Guard System: yet another way to legally kill Zaroken Roj

The massacre of Zangirt (Bilge) village on 5 May 2009 resulted in killing of 44+3 people (3 babies were not yet born). 6 people were injured. DTP pointed out the failure of Village Guard system and requested it's halt. Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Cicek, who said "Kurds are now neighbors with Armenia" after DTP won local elections in Igdir, now says "DTP being against Village Guard system is enough reason to keep it in effect".

Dr. Ismail Beşikçi recently summarized the issue of village guards for Bianet:
Village guard system

At the basis of all the reasons listed above lies the denial of the existence of a Kurdish people. The state’s basic Kurdish policy is assimilation. When some insist on holding on to their Kurdish identity, a rise in state terror is common practice. The village guard system came about in this context. Forcing Kurds to kill Kurds is a systematic state policy. The state did not only give the village guards arms, they also gave them wide-ranging authority. All kinds of illegal activities carried out by village guards against their own people, Kurds, were met with tolerance or studiously ignored by the state.

Kidnapping young women, highway robbery, rape, racketeering, and taking over the land of those who left the villages when they refused to become village guards – all this became more common in the process.


State protecting feudalism

Feudal institutions like tribes, sheikhs, and large landholders have been protected by the state itself because the state can prevent national developments among Kurds with the tribes and sheikhs it has tied to itself. It is true that today’s Kurdish nationalist movement and social struggles and their leaders have emerged from the working classes and poor Kurds. The village guard system offered these feudal relations not only psychological but also material support. It is possible to see these people at public bids. Licences to open petrol stations are given to these people. The dealership rights for certain basic consumer goods are given to these people and their relatives.

The tribal leaders and sheikhs who were sent to the gallows for struggling against the state in the 1920s and 1930s were those who did not adopt the official position.
The state, with it's military can be quite convincing to sign people up to be village guards. Those who decline being a village guard simply have to move away leaving everything behind or their villages will be burnt, they will be shot, you name it. Once you become a village guard, it's not easy to leave being one either. Your "resignation" simply won't be accepted. After the massacre of Zangirt village, 26 village guards in Wan wanted to lay down their arms and wanted out. The military will not let them go. If you keep insisting then what happened at Zangirt village will happen and everyone will get massacred.

Mazlumder (the Association of Human Rights and Solidatiry for Oppressed People) just released it's report to the media. It turns out the people in Zangirt village wanted to lay down their arms and get out of the Village Guard system. (http://firatnews.com/index.php?rupel=nuce&nuceID=7523) According to Mazlumder's report, head of the village has argued with the commander of the military post, located 3 miles from the village. I suppose that explains why the soldiers arrived at the village two hours after the massacre although they were notified (and heard the gunshots too) as soon as the shootings started. But wanting to lay down arms was not the only reason. Some of the villagers wanted to come back home from the west, where they had to migrate because they had refused to be village guards at the time. Their lands were confiscated by the village guards who committed this massacre. These people wanted their lands back. On one hand you have the local military commander who wants to show everyone what it costs to lay down arms and refuse being village guards and on the other hand you have the brutal village guards who are slaves of their greed and want to take over other people's property. The result, 44 people plus 3 babies in their mothers' womb were killed and 6 people injured.

Human Rights Watch (HRW) in Turkey published the statistics associated with Village Guards for the past 17 years. HRW wants the village guard system to come to a halt. The report specifies the incidents annually. HRW built the data from applications made to them and the news. Here is a summary of atrocities committed from 1992 to 2009:
Number of villages burnt down: 38
Number of villages vacated: 14
Rape and harassment: 12
Kidnapping: 22
Assault with firearms: 294
Number of civilians killed: 183
Number of civilians wounded: 259
Number of people went missing at their hands: 2
Number of civilians executed: 50
Number of extortions: 70
Number of people tortured and mistreated: 562
Number of people detained: 59
Number of people forced to suicide: 9
Number of forest arsons: 17

Killing and wounding of civilians

1992-2002: 132 killed, 176 wounded
2003: 12 killed, 17 wounded
2004: 12 killed, 21 wounded
2005: 3 wounded
2006: 3 killed, 9 wounded
2007: 6 killed, 4 wounded
2008: 18 killed, 23 wounded
January-March 2009: 6 wounded
[Zangirt (Bilge) Village massacre included, 2009: 44+3 Dead (3 women were pregnant), 12 wounded as of May 7]

Torture and ill treatment of individuals

1992-2002: 454 people
2003: 30 people
2004: 17 people
2005: 21 people
2006: 11 people
2007: 14 people
2008: 14 people
January-March 2009: 1 person [does leaving 70 children as orphans cause ill treatment? You figure this one out!]
The act that defines village guards' power is kept secret and not shared with the public. A pretty convenient way to keep the heroin trade going, isn't it?

Saturday, 2 May 2009

351 Kurdish Children Killed by Turkish Security Forces

In the past 20 years, 351 Kurdish children and babies were killed by Turkish security forces. The highest number of Kurdish children killed was in 1992. In 1992, the state murdered 115 Kurdish children and babies. Here is a chart showing how many Kurdish children and babies were killed during the past 20 years:
An optimist could claim that the number of children and babies murdered by the state is decreasing. You may think that the fascist forces have developed some compassion toward kids. This is wrong, however. They are just not firing bullets upon children as much now (this may be considered in the EU compliance context!). This statistic doesn't include children who have been beaten, like what happened recently in Colemerg (Hakkari). 16 year old İ.Ş who lost his left eye, 10 year old Ş.B. who's skull has been fractured, and the babies who were hurt because security forces got too trigger happy with their tear gas and repeatedly and randomly keep shooting them into houses are not included in this list. After all, it was the prime minister who said "women, children, whoever it is, the security forces will do whatever is necessary". Compassion just-does-not-mean shooting children with gas canisters nor does it mean beating children to death with butts of weapons then throwing them into prison. Speaking of imprisoning children:
Over 1,500 [Kurdish] children on trial

In answer to a motion in parliament, Minister of Justice Mehmet Ali Şahin reported that 1,572 [Kurdish] children were put on trial in 2006 and 2007 for “terrorism crimes” under the Turkish Penal Code and the Anti-Terrorism Law. 174 [Kurdish] children were convicted, 92 of them in Diyarbakır [Amed], in the southeast [Kurdistan] of Turkey.

The list of murdered children and babies is below and it tells a story to the careful eye. For example, pay attention to how many people have been killed in March, around Newroz of 1992. Also pay attention to last names. For example, look at 6 and 7 November 1992. It seems they killed whole families.

Detailed list of Kurdish children and babies murdered by the state:
(adapted from http://firatnews.com/index.php?rupel=nuce&nuceID=6884)
Format:
day (if known) Month: Name Surname (age), Location

1989 (Total number of children killed: 2)
19 July: Mahmut Yaşar (10), Şırnak
20 September: Fahrettin Ertaş (10), Şırna

1990 (Total number of children killed: 21)
20 March: Abidin Tuncer (10), Cizre
1 April: Berivan Kara (1), Uludere
1 April: Behecan Kara (9), Uludere
31 May: Canan Özen (8), Derik
10 June: Rahime Kayran (10), Basa
10 June: Meryem Kayran (10), Basa
10 June: Taibet Öner (3), Basa
10 June: Vasfiye Öner (10), Basa
10 June: Sait Kahraman (4). Basa
10 June: Hayrettin Öner (5), Basa
10 June: Fatma Kayran (15), Basa
10 June: Mehmet Kayran (5), Basa
10 June: Hüseyin Kayran (3), Basa
10 June: Haniye Özdemir (10,) Basa
10 June: Takviye Öner (15), Basa
10 June: Ömer Bestaş (16), Basa
14 June: Cevdet Güler (14), Hakkâri
14 June: Fehime Güler (9), Hakkâri
6 August: Faruk Aktuğ (13), Silopi
30 October: Ş. Pınar (11)
12 December: Hadi Dalan (11), Lice

1991 (Total number of children killed: 12)
28 February: Salih Talayhan (17), Şırnak
4 May: Murat Ardıç (13), Bingöl
8 June: Emine Latifeci (11), Hazro
25 June: Rinde Latifeci (13), Hazro
10 July: Behzat Özkan (14), Diyarbakır
3 August: Hediye Dilçe (18), Cizre
12 August: Ferzan Ceylan (12), Dargeçit
12 August: Abdullah Ceylan (12), Dargeçit
6 September: Ömür Eriş (11), Kurtalan
20 October: Nezahat Kızıl (6), Siirt
20 November: İsmet Mirzaoğlu (15), Ahlât
24 December: Veysi Aktaş (13), Lice

1992 (Total number of children killed: 115)
6 January: Emine Turan, Nusaybin
14 February: Seyfettin Kapkaçin (18), Mardin
14 February: Abdülselam Özbey (15), Mardin
15 March: Mehmet Evren (12), Cizre
18 March: Vesile Say (9), Dargeçit
18 March: Bedia Say (15), Dargeçit
18 March: Yasin Say (17), Dargeçit
18 March: Sami Say (10), Dargeçit
19 March: Hıdır Acet, Nusaybin
21 March: Muhrise Altay (18), Cizre
21 March: Hüseyin Altan (14), Cizre
21 March: İsmet Arvas (16), Van
21 March: Çetin Bayram (16), Van
21 March: Davut Soyvural (15), Gercüş
21 March: Mehmet Emin Acar (10), Şırnak
21 March: Nebat Kakuç (17), Şırnak
21 March: Bülent Zeyrek (16), Şırnak
21 March: Emin Tetik (15), Şırnak
21 March: Mehdi Günen (9), Şırnak
21 March: Halil Bebek (2), Nusaybin
21 March: Ahmet Kaya (1), Nusaybin
21 March: Fatma Kaçmaz (4), Yüksekova
22 March: Hatice Acar (5), Şırnak
22 March: Kadriye Kakın (17), Şırnak
22 March: Mehmet Nezir (13), Şırnak
24 March: Medeni Aydın (18), Batman
24 March: Bahri Çınar (12), Ömerli
25 March: Nihat Celasun (14), Cizre
25 March: Fatma Kaçmaz (14), Yüksekova
25 March: Medeni Tunç (14), Siirt
25 March: Medine Sevgi (18), Siirt
27 March: Süleyman Ayal (14), Urfa
29 March: Bişeng Anık (16), Şırnak
29 March: Mehmet Ekinci (7), Mazıdağı
29 March: Şeyhmus Aktürk (16), Dargeçit
11 April: Yasin Çetin (16), Mevzitepe
11 April: Hasan Ayar (11), Mevzitepe
17 April: Cazım Kortak (17), Savur
17 April: Mustafa Ok (18), Savur
18 April: Metin Kıratlı (10), Yüksekova
21 April: Yusuf Bodur (1), Midyat
21 April: Abdurrahman Yeşilmen (12), Midyat
21 April: Hamza Bulut (8), Midyat
22 April: Ayşe Balım (18), Silopi
4 May: Bişar Bilen (10), Uludere
4 May: Hanım Tunç (12), Uludere
9 May: Sıraç Nergis (17), Nusaybin
9 May: Selim Ata (17), Nusaybin
9 May: Sait Sağlam (17), Nusaybin
3 June: Mehmet Naif Çevik (9), Nusaybin
10 June: Kemal Şili (18), Tatvan
10 June: Mahmut Güreş (12), Tatvan
12 June: Emir Eyvani (7), Muş
22 June: Gülbahar Tunç (8), Gercüş
22 June: Behçet Tunç (17), Gercüş
22 June: Abdurrahman Gök (14), Gercüş
22 June: Şükrü Gök (10), Gercüş
22 June: Sultan Gök (12), Gercüş
22 June: Emrullah Gök (4), Gercüş
22 June: Haşim Gök (3), Gercüş
22 June: Yeni doğmuş bir bebek, Gercüş
26 June: Medine Kartal (18), İdil
27 June: Yılmaz Tatar (12), Şırnak
June: Abdülcelil Toy (14), Siirt
June: Sadık Turlu (15), Siirt
11 July: Gülistan Evin (6), Şemdinli
11 July: Rehan Evin (8), Şemdinli
22 July: Abdurrahman Akbalık (17), Nusaybin
25 July: Kadir Balık (13), Dicle
28 July: Nurcan Özatak (2), Hakkâri
July: Zuhal Avcı (9), Kulp
July: Çiğdem Esmer (10), Kulp
6 August: Hüseyin Bayılmaz (10), Nusaybin
10 August: Mehmet Erbek (12), Mardin
22 August: Zeliha Nasanlı (10), Siverek
23 August: Murat Dağkeser (10), Siverek
23 August: Orhan Dağkeser (4), Siverek
23–24 August: İbrahim Artunç (7), Şırnak
23–24 August: Remziye Artunç (10), Şırnak
23–24 August: Güler Sökmen (3), Şırnak
23–24 August: Veysi Sökmen (6), Şırnak
23–24 August: Sema Sökmen (9), Şırnak
23–24 August: Gülüm Güngen (6), Şırnak
23–24 August: Medine Güngen (14),Şırnak
5 September: Fuat Keskin (14), Doğubeyazıt
7 September: Mesut Dündar (15), Cizre
10 September: Cumali Çetrez (9), Hamur
10 September: Şefika Çetrez (7), Hamur
18 September: Ahmet Alan (10), Solhan
1 October: Hüseyin Esrai (16), Kars
3 October: Aziz Bal (17), Dargeçit
20 October: Sinan Demirtaş (18), Nusaybin
24 October: Zeyni Dağ (17), Nusaybin
1 November: Devrim Eleftoz (1), Silvan
5 November: Şurzan Demirkapı (16), Kovancılar
6 November: Milet Samur (14), Şemdinli
6 November: İkmal Samur (18), Şemdinli
6 November: Gülsüme Samur (4), Şemdinli
6 November: Reber Samur (1), Şemdinli
7 November: Şivan Çığırga (3), Cizre
7 November: Nadire Çığırga (10), Cizre
7 November: Sinem Çığırga (13), Cizre
7 November: Fatma Çığırga (9), Cizre
7 November: Bahar Çığırga (7), Cizre
22 November: Coşkun Benzer (12), Kilis
22 November: Fırat Geçmez (18), Silvan
3 December: Mehmet İşler (18), Midyat
6 December: Melek Bora (10), Dargeçit
16 December: Garibe Karasakal (18), Nusaybin
17 December: Veysi Başar (8), Diyarbakır
17 December: Fatma Can (17), Diyarbakır
24 December: Nafi Kalemli (14), Viranşehir
December: Hüseyin Ensari (16), Kars
December: Mehmet Yusufi (15), Başkale
December: November Oval (14), Yüksekova

1993 (Total number of children killed: 66)
11 January: Gülistan İşiyok (12), Kulp
12 January: Nezir Ergün (8), Cizre
12 January: Hacer Ergün (6), Cizre
12 January: Hıdır Ergün (17), Cizre
31 January: Naze Ekici (12), Şırnak
31 January: Şemsi Ekici (4), Şırnak
31 January: Hamza Ekici (6), Şırnak
17 February: Esra Saçaklı (8), Silvan
20 February: Abide Ekin (3), Basa
7 May: Gürgiz Bayındır (5), İdil
23 May: Naim Aslan, Yüksekova
25 May: Semra Bayram, Silvan
18 June: İrfan Fidan (17), Savur
7 July: Mahmut Aydemir, Silopi
7 July: Fadile Aydemir (6), Silopi
7 July: Ayşe Yıldız, Silopi
11 July: Dinçer Levent (16), Hamur
11 July: Feride Levent (15), Hamur
13 July: Canan Çiftçi, Diyadin
13 July: Dilşah Çiftçi, Diyadin
13 July: Ender Çiftçi, Diyadin
13 July: Ruken Çiftçi (6), Diyadin
20 July: Azad Sabırlı (7), Bahçesaray
20 July: Yunus Sabırlı (2), Bahçesaray
20 July: Bahar Turan (3), Bahçesaray
20 July: Sevil Ağaç (7), Bahçesaray
20 July: Suzan Turan (10), Bahçesaray
20 July: Yıldız Güzel (13), Bahçesaray
20 July: Nezahat Elmalı (12), Bahçesaray
20 July: Eylem Elmalı (4), Bahçesaray
20 July: Azime Elmalı (14), Bahçesaray
20 July: Muhammet Yaşar (8), Bahçesaray
20 July: Hanım Yaşar (4), Bahçesaray
20 July: Hürriyet Sevgili (12), Bahçesaray
24 July: C. M. (12), Silvan
30 July: Elif Rani (7), Pazarcık
30 July: Gözde Rani (4), Pazarcık
14 August: Zeynep Çağdavul (18), Digor
14 August: Selvi Çağdavul (16), Digor
14 August: Gülistan Çağdavul (18), Digor
14 August: Yeter Keremciler (14), Digor
14 August: Zarife Boylu (16), Digor
14 August: Necla Geçener (14), Digor
August: Seyhan Doğan (12), Dargeçit
August: Abdurrahman Coşkun (18), Dargeçit
August: M. Emin Aslan (18), Dargeçit
11 September: Seyithan Balçık, Cizre
11 September: Mesut Balçık, Cizre
13 September: Yusuf Bozkurt (14), Şırnak
13 September: Halit Akıl (12), Şırnak
21 September: Ahmet Arcagök (11), Diyarbakır
28 September: İdris Ülüş (12), Yüksekova
30 September: Sercan Ülüş (7), Yüksekova
2 October: Şakir Öğüt (7) Altınova/Muş
2 October: Cihan Öğüt (4) Altınova/Muş
2 October: M. Şirin Öğüt (1) Altınova/Muş
2 October: Aycan Öğüt (6) Altınova/Muş
2 October: Çınar Öğüt (3) Altınova/Muş
9 October: Zana Zoğurlu (16), Lice
9 October: Lokman Zoğurlu (17), Lice
10 October: Yalçın Yaşa (13) Diyarbakır
22 October: Dilbirin Canpolat (3,5), Lice
22 October: Suna Canpolat (2), Lice
22 October: Hüseyin Canpolat (15),Lice
17 December: Halil Leco (13), Ovacık
December: Mahmut Erol (15), Dargeçit

1994 (Total number of children killed: 87)
3 January: B. A. (12), Hani
5 January: Keko Gül (12), Adana
6 January: Ali Katmış (1), Cizre
7 January: A. Halim Rüzgâr (12), Batman
10 January: Muhammet Bilgiç (5), Cizre
10 January: Ahmet Bilgiç (6), Cizre
14 January: Azad Önen (16), Diyarbakır
18 January: Süleyman Gün (15), Diyarbakır
25 January: Ahmet Efe (8), Diyarbakır
13 February: İbrahim Şeflik (5), Silopi
16 February: Hakan Yalçın (14), Diyarbakır
23 February: Bilavşan Asper (17), Tatvan
26 February: Sevgi Asma (7), Kurtalan
26 February: Sohbet Öngün (3), Sason
26 February: Hanifi Yıldız (13), Sason
26 February: Hüseyin Tekin (16), Sason
1 March: R. A. (3), Kızıltepe
19 March: Ferman Cingöz (16), Lice
27 March: Mirza Yıldırım (3), Şırnak
27 March: Mehmet Yıldırım (15), Şırnak
27 March: Abdülkerim Yıldırım (2), Şırnak
27 March: İrfan Yıldırım (5), Şırnak
27 March: Xunaf Yıldırım (3), Şırnak
27 March: Çiçek Benzer (2), Şırnak
27 March: Ali Benzer (7), Şırnak
27 March: Ayşe Benzer (1), Şırnak
27 March: Ömer Benzer (12), Şırnak
27 March: Abdurrahman Benzer (4), Şırnak
10 April: İlhami Menteş (12), Lice
10 April: Raif Menteş (13), Lice
27 April: Keziban Kalkan (15), Genç
28 May: Tuncer Güler (11), Ağrı
30 May: Şerif Ekin (13), Basa
2 June: Ahmet Kaya (13), Yüksekova
2 June: Hasan Demir (14), Yüksekova
5 June: Didar Elmas (7), Ovacık
8 June: Barzan…. (2), Silvan
25 June: Hüsnü Turan (10), Nusaybin
25 June: Eylem Tur (13), Nusaybin
25 June: Süleyman Erik (9), Nusaybin
25 June: Emrullah Zeybek (10), Bitlis
25 June: Hikmet Argün (13), Bitlis
27 June: Xanime Sincar (17), Ömerli
28 June: Hayri Yüksel (15), Ömerli
4 July: Atilla Kılıç (14), Kozluk
8 July: Nurullah Solhan (16), Kızıltepe
8 July: Emrullah Solhan (14), Kızıltepe
8 July: Selma Solhan (7), Kızıltepe
11 July: A. Menaf Tunç (14), Siirt
16 July: Kenan Dartan (12), Kozluk
31 July: Gültekin Acet (10), Bismil
5 August: Abdullah Kamçı (16), Yüksekova
8 August: Sedat Barış (18), Batman
12 August: Netice Coşkun (14), Kulp
12 August: Mümine Zümrüt (18), Kulp
15 August: Çelebi Özgüç (15), Savur
15 August: İshak Özgüç (13), Savur
22 August: Savaş Ateş (11), Dicle
22 August: Halit Güneş (13), Dicle
22 August: Bayram Güneş (13), Dicle
22 August: Vedat Balta (12), Dicle
22 August: İbrahim Balta (13), Dicle
22 August: İsa Can (15), Dicle
1 September: Nurettin Doruk (18), Diyarbakır
13 September: Sadettin Doğan (10), Lice
15 September: Sedat Öner (7), Eruh
15 September: Mehmet Sercan (9), Eruh
15 September: Cemşit Adıgüzel (13), Eruh
20 September: Şükran Yıldız (11), Çukurca
25 September: Dilek Serin (3), Dersim
25 September: Yeter Işık (16), Dersim
25 September: Elif Işık (18), Dersim
25 September: Recep Tartar (8), Genç
25 September: Kürdiye Savaş (8), Genç
25 September: Emrah Tartar (8), Genç
25 September: Faruk Savaş (11), Genç
2 October: Filiz Kayış, Ceylanpınar
3 October: İlyas Yiğit (6), Çat
3 October: Adil Boztaş (10), Kağızman
9 October: Nurşan Bulut (13), Palu
10 October: Mehmet Üste (12), Pazarcık
31 October: Hamdi Dündar (18), Yüksekova
31 October: Fikri Yılmaz (15), Yüksekova
18 November: Cüneyt Tarhan (11), Tatvan
1 December: Yunus Turgut (13), Silopi
December: Hasip Kaya (9), Doğubayazıt
December: Yılmaz Kaya (10), Doğubayazıt

1995 (Total number of children killed: 7)
April: Erol Öztunç (2), Uludere
17 May: Ahmet Bulut (10), Ömerli
17 May: Rahim Kumru (10), Ömerli
25 May: Dinar Aras (12), Iğdır 1995
25 May: Cüneyt Aras (6), Iğdır
25 May: Ergün Aras (3), Iğdır
25 May: Ferdi Aras (2), Iğdır

1996 (Total number of children killed: 6)
2 May: Hazal Sevim (17), Baykan
8 August: Dilan Bayram (2), Adana
8 August: Berivan Bayram (4), Adana
13 November: Hatice Bozaslan (17), Derik
2 December: Oktan Çaçan (14), Diyarbakır
11 December: Mehmet Banan (15), Midyat

1997 (Total number of children killed: 7)
6 March: Musa Adsız (12), Akçakale
23 April: M. Şerif Öztürk (11), Kızıltepe
25 April: Muhammet Kulçur (12), Dumlu/ Erzurum
25 April: Gökhan Kulçur (10), Dumlu/ Erzurum
8 May: Fedai Öğürce (4), Pasinler
10 November: M. Özdemir (17), Ceylanpınar
11 November: Bilal Alanca (5), Nusaybin

1998 (Total number of children killed: 2)
January: Fatih Kaya (18), Batman
15 March: Engin Ceylan (14), Lice

1999 (Total number of children killed: 12)
14 March: Tugay Ergin (10), Hani
26 March: Abdurrahman Gezer (18), Osmaniye
17 April: Yılmaz Elüstü (17), Genç
15 May: Kenan Oğuz, Erzurum
15 May: Deniz Oğuz, Erzurum
15 May: Cansu Oğuz, Erzurum
20 June: Mehmet Algan (11), İdil
1 August: Fırat Çiçek (9), Elazığ
1 August: Onur Şahin (11), Elazığ
1 August: Sedat Karakoç (14), Elazığ,
17 August: Şaban Çadıroğlu (15), Van
25 September: İnan Cila (11), Ovacık

2000 (Total number of children killed: 3)
Serdar Günerci (17), Diyarbakır
Welat Şedal (10), Yüksekova
İsmail Şedal (8), Yüksekova

2004 (Total number of children killed: 1)
21 November: Uğur Kaymaz (12), Mardin

2006 (Total number of children killed: 8)
29 March: Abdullah Duran (9), Diyarbakır
30 March: Enes Ata (8), Diyarbakır
30 March: İsmail Erkek (8), Diyarbakır
March: Fatih Tekin (3), Batman
March: Ahmet Araç (17), Mardin
3 April: Mahsum Mızrak (17), Diyarbakır
3 April: Emrah Fidan (17), Diyarbakır
5 September: Mizgin Özbek (10), Batman

2008 (Total number of children killed: 1)
15 February: Yahya Menekşe (12), Şırnak

2009 (Total number of children killed: 1 as of 1 May 2009)
23 April: Abdülsamet Erip (14), Hakkâri

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Jail Sentences for Kurdish Children

In Adana, Turkey, on April 27 2009, thirteen children were sentenced to a total of 112 years 10 days. They were found guilty of "committing crime in the name of an organization" which means taking part in a demonstration; "performing organization's propaganda" which means shouting some supportive slogans, "resisting to an officer", which simply means you resist to let one of those thugs smash your skull with butt of his weapon, shoot you with a gas canister or run you over with an armored vehicle. Again in Adana, on April 28 2009, eleven children were sentenced to a total of 84 years 6 months. So, in two days twenty-four children were sentenced to a total of 196 years, 6 months, and 10 days. Eight of the 24 children are 15-years old or below. Four of them are 15, two are 14, and two are 13 years old.

Turkey's democracy is pretty advanced about handing jail sentences to children, is it not?

Monday, 27 April 2009

Enough with killing Kurdish children!

In Wan (Van) an armored police vehicle hit a seven year old Kurdish girl. The girl, named Maziye Aslan, died at the scene. Maybe one day people who are not Kurdish will understand that the song Mihemedo is there for a reason...

Below is translation of the article by Hasan Bildirici published in Kurdistan Post on 26 April 2009 in response to the recent brutality of special forces who caused death of a child and smashed skull of another child with butt of a rifle (check the posts at Zerkesorg or Hevallo for details):

We don't expect justice from you; we are just warning you:

Don't hit our children! We want to remind you that hitting children is a sick behaviour.

It's not your women who gave birth to the children of Kurdistan, a country you have invaded; you haven't fed those children. You didn't caress their head in sickness and hunger.

Your crap-faced officers have melted those kids' fathers in acid wells; dragged mother and grandmothers of those children at the gates of Diyarbakir [Amed] prisons, just because a word in Kurdish slipped out of their lips...

All those bravery tales you tell your women and children are lies. It's true that you try your bravery on our women, who throw their scarfs aside and march on the streets and our dark-eyed children who circle around your vehicles...

Don't hit our children. This isn't a plea. This is an order from the people of Kurdistan: don't hit our children!

We are among those who know it well what it means to stay helpless in front of Turkish racist barrels. There are countless heroes of Kurdistan who showed one wouldn't beg for mercy from those Turkish racist barrels and die with dignity.

Friends of a generation which has raptured death's artery don't beg children murderers. They will order, don't hit our children!

Don't lay a finger on our pretty-eyed children lining up next to the walls of run-down houses you have collapsed on them. We will not trade your whole kingdom, your race borders, F16's, tanks, artillery and crap-faced flock of murderers' infection-fed salaries to one drop of tear from the eyes of those children who grew up with memories of your murderous nights.

Don't hit our children who are orphans of Kurdistan.

If one day, one of your children has a slap from an adult Kurd because of being Turkish, let our hands break as a nation. Even if it's just for this, don't hit our children...

If one day, a civilian or soldier, just because he is Turkish, is shot by a Kurd, let those bullets hit our hearts as a nation [of Kurds].

Even if it's just for this, don't hit Kurdish children.

Carry on the war with dignity, comply with one percent of bravery stories you tell your women and children and don't touch Kurdish children.

If one day, harm comes [by a Kurd] to one line of hair of one of your women because she is Turkish, let her hair be the rope around our neck [for hanging].

Even if it's just for this, don't hit Kurdish children.

If you continue hitting our children, we will say that not breaking your children-murdering hands is to be an accessory in your crime...

This is an order from Kurdistan you made into a field of death:

Don't hit the orphans of Kurdistan.

Carry on the war, honestly, with those at war.

Try this only once...

Hasan Bildirici
Kurdistan-Post, 26 April 2009
The original, in Turkish, can be read here.

Saturday, 25 April 2009

Ill Treatment of Children (of Sun) in Turkey

Children are beloved beings and should be treated as such. As their name indicates, they are children, future adults in the making. Most cultures and governments have implemented this simple and universal truth into their laws. You shall not apply the punishment you used for adults to children. It doesn't work. One "advanced democracy" has been practicing the complete opposite of this universal truth. It has been harsh to its child citizens who are Kurdish. Yes, children Zarokên Roj are persecuted in Turkey. We are talking about a democracy in which children are detained because:
"they had had been sweating or were breathing fast, and this had made them suspicious."

[...]

"In our country, a police officer killing a civilian by kicking him and a murderer bombing a McDonald's are released after six years, but children throwing stones are handed 38-year prison sentences. Children will spend their lives in prison for throwing stones, but people who kill others or murderers who throw bombs get away will light punishments and re-enter society."
Full story.

Just a few days ago, a child died because he fell into the river while running away from the police. This child was running so he wouldn't get beaten mercilessly. Another child, who was caught by the police was beaten severely by stock of a rifle. His skull is fractured. The child may die. You can read more on this particular event here and if you choose so, you can watch the video posted. I need to warn you that the video is graphic.

On 22 April 2009, four children were each sentenced to 6 years 11 months in prison. Their crime was to participate in a demonstration organized by the Democratic Society Party (DTP). The court decided these children Zarokên Roj were guilty of "opposing the police" and "acted against the demonstration's law" DTP is effectively the only party that represents Kurds in Turkey and demands Kurds' basic rights. Full story here.

Two children Zarokên Roj performing folk dance in Lice, Amed (Diyarbakir) allegedly carried a portrait of Ocalan. Each child received 6 months 20 days prison sentence. (news on 6 March 2009)

These were all recent events. Just to show you that these practices are not new, I will present two other random examples. The first one is from 2006:
After the funerals in Diyarbakir on 28 March [2006] of four members of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), who had been killed by the security forces, demonstrations escalated into violent protests during which demonstrators threw stones and Molotov cocktails, and damaged property. Four individuals were shot dead by the security forces. In subsequent days, during further violent demonstrations in Diyarbakir and other towns in the region including Batman, Kiziltepe, Siirt and Nusaybin, the number of civilians killed rose to 13, at least four of them children. According to the available autopsy reports most of them died as a result of gunshot wounds. Many demonstrators and law enforcement officials were injured. On 2 April, in Istanbul, three women were crushed to death by a bus which was set alight following a Molotov cocktail attack allegedly perpetrated by demonstrators. During these incidents, hundreds of demonstrators, including children, were detained. The majority of detainees in Diyarbakir alleged that they were subjected to ill-treatment on apprehension, and torture or other ill-treatment once in custody.
The last one is from 2001.
Twenty-eight children aged from 9 to 18 were arrested on 9 January, accused of chanting slogans for the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). They were allegedly beaten and ill-treated, and detained in cruel, inhuman or degrading conditions. Six of them, aged 14 to 16, remain in an adult prison.
And it goes on...

Do you get the point? Zaroken Roj need to free their children, their future!

Monday, 20 April 2009

Kurds Invented Wine???

I couldn't pass this up. It seems Kurdistan was where first wine was made!
From the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archeology and Anthropology
A major step forward in our understanding of Neolithic winemaking came from the analysis of a yellowish residue inside a jar excavated by Mary M. Voigt at the site of Hajji Firuz Tepe in the northern Zagros Mountains of Iran.
Well, guess whose home are we talking about? The big bad Kurds! ;-) Read on:
The jar, with a volume of about 9 liters (2.5 gallons) was found together with five similar jars embedded in the earthen floor along one wall of a "kitchen" of a Neolithic mudbrick building, dated to ca. 5400-5000 B.C. The structure, consisting of a large living room that may have doubled as a bedroom, the "kitchen," and two storage rooms, might have accommodated an extended family. That the room in which the jars were found functioned as a kitchen was supported by the finding of numerous pottery vessels, which were probably used to prepare and cook foods, together with a fireplace.
You can read about this on Vintage Direct too. Let's hope the French won't be too upset!

Sunday, 19 April 2009

DTP are Children of the Sun!

They are children of the sun

They won't give into oppression

No... They won't


No, they won't

They won't...

Won't happen

...


Zaroken roj will never give in!!!




Bijî DTP!

Sunday, 12 April 2009

HERE WE ARE!

We, the Kurds, are the children of the sun. We are here. We have been here for over four thousand years and we shall be here.

No matter how brutal and denying the oppressors, how cheap the jash and korucu; we shall remain here; defiant, causing nightmares for the oppressors. Our flame will warm the hearts of our friends and burn the enemies of our people. We are people of fire.