The silent siege: Kurds face torture, abuse and killing in Nusaybin, Turkey

Published February 21st, 2017 - 10:40 GMT
People are seen near a barricade after clashes between Turkish security forces and Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants in the Nusaybin district of Mardin, southeast Turkey, November 26, 2015. (AFP/File)
People are seen near a barricade after clashes between Turkish security forces and Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants in the Nusaybin district of Mardin, southeast Turkey, November 26, 2015. (AFP/File)

“Why is the World Silent? 1700 civilians are under siege! Break the silence!” This urgent post appeared on Twitter yesterday, followed by the hashtags #StopWarCrimesInKorukoy and #Nusaybin.

The hashtags are referring to Turkey’s Korukoy village in Nusaybin, where the Kurdish population has been besieged by Turkish security forces since 11 February, and from where horrific reports of torture, sexual abuse and killing are emanating.

Yet while #StopWarCrimesInKorukoy and #Nusaybin  have been circulating across social media, Korukoy and Nusaybin remain relatively unknown names, and a quick google search proves that the reports of the siege and severe human rights abuse have managed to evade mainstream media.

Despite silence across most news outlets, social media has been in full force. Twitter has been flooded with shocking images of dead bodies and destroyed houses, alongside calls for help to the international community, as activists and journalists document the unfolding events of the siege and what many are describing as a ‘massacre.’ 

Outside of social media, politicians in Turkey's parliament have stood up to voice their opposition to the seige.   

“Marks of severe torture were found on a body that arrived at the hospital in Mardin. Illiterate women were forced to sign papers they didn’t understand,” member of Turkey’s Parliament Ahmet Yildirim said in a press conference on Monday.

“We are asking the Minister of National Defence and the Ministry of Internal Affairs why people that want to leave the village aren’t allowed to do so. What does it say in the documents that those who are denied to leave are forced to sign?”

Nusaybin, a city of almost 100,000, is a Kurdish town on the Syrian border, and much of it is under control of the Kurdish fighters of the YPS. In mid-2015, Turkish government forces started a military campaign last year to crush an uprising by the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), targeting ‘northern Kurdistan,’ a homeland the Turkish government refuses to recognise.

Critics have said Turkey is targeting Kurds as a whole in its fight against the PKK, with human rights groups accusing  government forces of carrying out massacres of civilians and extrajudicial killings.

AM

Follow the Loop on Twitter and Facebook  

 

 


© 2000 - 2021 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)

You may also like