Archive for TSK terrorists

UPDATES FROM DIYARBAKIR’S IHD OFFICE

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on November 5, 2009 by Mizgîn
“Today’s human rights violations are the causes of tomorrow’s conflicts.”
~ Mary Robinson.

Here are a couple of statements from the Diyarbakır IHD office. The first is an update on the human rights situation in the Kurdish region of Turkey:

PRESS STATEMENT

27 October 2009

(Give the Republic’s biggest project a chance)

Dear press members

Although we’ve seen partial advancements regarding democracy and human rights in Turkey in recent times, we can still say that there are serious problems concerning the exercise of basic rights and liberties. Two forms of power are needed for human rights to find life in a country; the first is the power of Democratic Public Opinion, and the second is the power of the law. If these two forms of power don’t exist in a given country we can’t mention human rights. When we look at practices in Turkey in recent years, it’s clear that there are very serious complications obstructing the exercise of each of these forms of power.

In the European Union progress report released on 13 October 2009, it says that Turkey has made progress in the areas of economic competition and statistical and scientific research, but that there’s a chequered picture in the areas of human rights and democracy.

According to the EU report, with respect to the primacy of human rights and democracy, the protection of minorities, civil and political rights, civil oversight of expenditures on security forces, reform of the constitution, freedom of assembly and protest, freedom of belief, reform of local administration, the independence of the country’s forensic medical foundation, the independence of the judiciary, children being punished with sentences of 25 years in prison, the use of languages other than Turkish, the right to unionize, the rights of disabled people, the Kurdish question, the Cyprus question, the question of cultural rights, the problem of novels and discrimination, in some areas we’re still witnessing serious fluctuations – that is, regression – instead of halts to violations.

Fourteen days after the 29 March 2009 local elections, a major operation was carried out against the Democratic Society Party (Demokratik Toplum Partisi – DTP). Three operations have been carried out against the party in the last six months. More than 1,000 people have been detained. Due to a judicial decision prohibiting access to files concerning the situation of the detained people, 450 DTP members and activists have remained under arrest for months without knowing what they’re being charged with. The principle and practice of being released pending trial is violated for DTP members and child victims of the Turkish Anti-Terror Law. There country’s prison population now exceeds 120,000. In the last four years, security forces have increased the use of disproportionate force against children and children’s deaths have increased as a result. In the latest EU progress report this matter is raised by mentioning police officers who have been “acquitted” after facing trial for “killing outside legitimate self-defence”.

In recent years the army’s repression and tutelage over politics, the judiciary, media and society have reached extraordinary dimensions. The military very frequently goes before the press and makes statements on all varieties of political issues. In the EU progress report it’s requested that the 1997 EMASYA secret Protocol on Security, Public Order and Assistance Units be terminated.

When we look at our table of confirmed violations in the East and Southeast Anatolia region, we can’t say that a heart-warming picture emerges. When we evaluate violations in the last nine months of the year 2009, we see an erratic picture. The number of lives lost in clashes has decreased compared to last year, but we’ve observed that these losses continue and that there’s been a sharp increase in extrajudicial killings as well as murders carried out by unknown perpetrators.

We’ve also seen that the number of people killed and injured by mines and stand-alone explosive articles has increased. A serious increase of complaints regarding torture and maltreatment has been seen again. An increase in incidences of interference in and beatings at social actions has been confirmed in the last nine months. The disproportionate use of force has been triggered by a failure to open sufficient inquiries against those who use excessive force, the abscence of anger control, and the forcing of security forces to work excessive overtime hours.

It seems that everything changed for the worse following the Prime Minister’s July 2005 action and greatly important speech on the Kurdish question in Diyarbakır, especially in 2008, when violations reached their highest levels. Violations decreased considerably in the first three months of 2009 and have continued to increase since April. At a time when a democratic solution for the Kurdish question is being debated, we’re curious as to why violations are increasing non-stop.

In recent years the government has introduced an extremely hardline approach to policy and matters related to children. Slapping children with sentences of between 10 and 25 years in prison due to their flashing of the ‘V’ for victory sign with their fingers or for throwing stones, the aquittal of those responsible for the death of Uğur Kaymaz, the 28 September killing of Ceylan Önköl with an artillery shell, and the fact that those responsible for the loss of 18 month-old Mehmet Uytun’s life – who died as a result of a gas bomb that was deployed as his mother was breastfeeding him on the balcony of their home in Cizre – still haven’t been found, has damaged the trust of the region’s people in the state and judiciary and increased mistrust between local people and the state. Why has there been a serious increase in children’s deaths? Why haven’t the perpetrators been tried following these deaths? What’s the explanation for the fact that 98% of judicial and administrative inquiries opened about security forces between 2003 and 2008 ended in their favor and that 2% ended with light punishments?

The increase in human rights abuses in recent times has been caused by intensified operations and clashes in northern Iraq and Turkey’s Eastern and Southeastern regions, the repression of peaceful and nonviolent social movements and political parties, and the growth of hardline nationalism.

We find the work the government’s doing concerning the ‘Democratic opening’ to be meaningful and positive. However, the rapid increase in human rights violations that this process has coincided with perturbs us. We don’t understand the extreme reaction that’s been shown to the return of those who came from Kandil and Mahmur. They returned with the goal of opening the clogged political process and were met with a peaceful gathering, without throwing a single stone, initiating any violent rallies or shouting anti-state slogans. We think that there needs to be an end to the speeches to the effect that after this, every word and every step taken must be taken within an approach that considers all of the emotions in Turkey, that those who are going to contribute to a solution must be ‘more careful’, and that ‘we’ll turn back, we’ll start from the beginning.’

If we turn away from a Democratic solution to the Kurdish Question – the Republic’s biggest project – our country will be brought back a hundred years, and if there’s a solution it’ll be the end of an era and we’ll move into a bright period. It’ll be brought closer to Europe. We’re either going to forget the pain of the past and open a new page or we’re going to dig new graves. Believing in everyone’s dream of peace, from now on we request that prejudices and the past be left aside, that work be done to stop the flow of blood, and that steps be taken mindful of the weight of every word and action.

With our respect,

Muharrem Erbey, Attorney at Law

Vice President of the Human Rights Association

President of the Diyarbakir Branch of the HRA

The second statement, below, is an IHD statement on the murder of Ceylan Önkol:

PRESS STATEMENT

13 October 2009

(Why aren’t those who killed Ceylan being investigated?)

On 28 September 2009 at 11:30, 12 year-old Ceylan Önkol lost her life as a result of being fired upon while tending sheep. The incident occured in Xambaz hamlet near Şenlik village in the Lice district of Diyarbakır province. A Human Rights Delegation drafted a report after visiting the village where the incident took place and gathering everyone’s statements. Ceylan’s mother, father, older brother and indeed every witness asserted that they had heard a humming and vooming-type sound that came from the direction of Tabantepe police station, followed by an explosion. Even this assertion implies that a mortar had been fired at that time. They didn’t know the exact type of weapon that was used, but the family identified the item as a mortar shell. But the type of artillery doesn’t change the identity of the perpetrators. The perpetrators are the ones who have these very special weapons.

The UN’s Convention on the Rights of the Child was published in Turkey’s official gazete in 1994 and went into effect in the country the same year. The Convention’s sixth article states: ‘1. States Parties recognize that every child has the inherent right to life. 2. States Parties shall ensure to the maximum extent possible the survival and development of the child.’ The state has to protect and safeguard children. The fact that perpetrators aren’t being tried in an active and effective way as the number of children’s deaths increases leaves us human rights defenders concerned.

In the criminal report it says that a mortar had been fired before the incident occured. But that contention can’t be used to absolve the suspects of responsibility for Ceylan’s death. Has even the most minor inquiry about the perpetrators been carried out up until now? What was the sound that was heard before the explosion, and why was it heard by everyone? Is the topic of the mortar that had been fired before being removed from the line of inquiry?

Do sounds like that emerge when mortar shells are tampered with while they’re on the ground? According to the witness statements, was there or was there not a humming and vooming sound after it was fired? How come the criminal report that wasn’t given to Serdar Çelebi and Keziban Yılmaz (the Önkol family’s lawyers and members of the Human Rights Association’s Steering Committee) by the Lice public prosecturor’s office was given to the entire press in a surreptitious way? We’re interested in the answers to these questions.

In this region, we’ve seen other incidents resulting from articles that resemble unexploded ordinance and remants of war being tampered with or hit with a rock in areas where there are children. We showed that such incidents resulted in the child’s hand being severed and her entire body wounded.

In conclusion, we’ve been told that this incident result from Ceylan hitting an unexploded shell with a farming tool that she was holding in her hand. The report prepared by the criminal investigation unit at Diyarbakır Metropolitan Police Headquarters was not objective, and when the case file comes to the Diyarbakır Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office, we’re going to object as the Human Rights Association and as the family’s lawyers.

We’re going to request that research be done to determine whether or not it’s possible to ascertain that a bomb had been deployed or not by looking at the components of the case file.

Muharrem Erbey, Attorney at Law

Vice President of the Human Rights Association, President of the Diyarbakır branch of the HRA

TURKISH TERRORISTS MURDER KURDISH GIRL IN LICE

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , on October 3, 2009 by Mizgîn
“Wanton killing of innocent civilians is terrorism, not a war against terrorism.”
~ Noam Chomsky.

THE STATE OF INJUSTICE

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on September 30, 2009 by Mizgîn
“A kingdom founded on injustice never lasts.”
~ Lucius Annaeus Seneca.

Picture this: A seventeen-year-old guy picks up his seventeen-year-old girlfriend after school and takes her to his family’s large home. The guy kills the girl, decapitates her with a saw and chops up her body, stuffs the body parts into a suitcase and guitar case, gets a driver to take him to a dumpster on the other side of town and disposes of the body.

The guy’s father is picked up by the police on charges of abetting the crime and the mother flees the country.

Six months after the murder, the guy turns himself in to the police.

What do you think should happen to a guy like this? Would it make any difference if you knew that the murderer was a member of one of the richest families in the country?

If this story plays out in Turkey, which it did, the murderer will be charged in juvenile court instead of being tried as an adult–because he’s only seventeen.

More on the murder at Zaman and another at Bianet. Note that the first of those articles claims the father of the murdered girl is quoted as thanking the police and government for helping to capture the murderer. However, that’s not at all the same guy who was on NTV on the day of the surrender, yelling to know what kind of deal had been made between the government and the very rich kid’s family.

On the other hand, if you’re a ten-year-old kid growing up in another part of the country, in a family that was probably forcibly displaced from their home back in the 1990s, and you’re a Kurd, you’re going to get very different treatment from the state:

In Adana alone, some 155 children are facing trial, 67 have been convicted and five have begun to serve their sentences, says Ethem Acikalin, head of the local branch of Turkey’s Human Rights Association. All were charged under article 220/6 of the penal code, which criminalises “acting on behalf of a terrorist organisation”. The cases are tried in adult courts.

Or then there was Cizre:

If Turkish prosecutors have their way, Yilmaz, a soft-spoken 16-year-old with a teenager’s pimply face, could spend up to seven years in jail for having joined a demonstration early last year in the town of Cizre, in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast.

Yilmaz (the name has been changed to protect his identity) has already spent 13 months in jail awaiting trial, although he was recently let out on bail. Although he joined a demonstration that took place after the funeral of a young boy who had been run over by a police armored vehicle during an earlier protest, prosecutors say the event was organized by the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and are charging the boy with supporting a terrorist organization.

“In each appearance in court, we were telling the prosecutors that we are children, that they should let us go back to our lives,” says Yilmaz.

Yilmaz is one of hundreds of minors, some as young as 13, who have been arrested and jailed in Turkey over the last few years under strict new anti-terrorism laws that allow for juveniles to be tried as adults. Some have even been accused of “committing crimes in the name of a terrorist organization” for participating in demonstrations that prosecutors charge have been organized the PKK.

If you’re the police and you torture a Kurdish kid in broad daylight, in front of media cameras, then have no fear! Your case will be dropped.

Then there are the activities of the ironically-named “Children’s Day” in Hakkari.

Or, as happened several days ago, if you’re a fourteen-year-old Kurdish girl gathering feed for her sheep, you can just be blown to bits by TSK mortar fire. At least Ceylan’s mother was able to pick up the pieces of her daughter that were left so that they could be buried. The cover-up is already ongoing because no prosecutor arrived at the scene of the crime and he cites “security zone” (i.e. OHAL) as the reason for helping TSK to cover up its murder of this Kurdish child.

So much for the “Kurdish initiative”. Hevals, you are needed!

WILLFUL AND DEDICATED IGNORANCE

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on June 4, 2009 by Mizgîn
“It is only in folk tales, children’s stories, and the journals of intellectual opinion that power is used wisely and well to destroy evil. The real world teaches very different lessons, and it takes willful and dedicated ignorance to fail to perceive them.”
~ Noam Chomsky.

I used to think IWPR was a fairly decent source of news, especially from such places as Iraq or Afghanistan, but I think I’ll have to reasses my judgement.

IWPR has a piece up about the PKK and the KRG, in which it claims that the KRG is supposed to “end the fighting between it’s neighbors and Kurdish rebels based inside its borders.”

How is the KRG supposed to do that when those who need to sit downn to “end the fighting” are the Ankara regime and the Kurds of North Kurdistan, including the PKK?

Henri Barkey, author of a recent report on the region for a Washington-based think-tank the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, told IWPR the KRG could seek to persuade the rebels to agree to some form of deal “and ensure that a demilitarisation is done honourably”.

Now we have just seen where the PKK itself stands with regard to a political solution with the Ankara regime, in Hasan Cemal’s series from Kandil (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and Part 4), all of which were available from the original source at Milliyet days before the IWPR piece was published. Later we had the piece from the London Times which included statements from Murat Karayılan that were the same as in the Hasan Cemal series.

So why didn’t IWPR or Henri Barkey call attention to the position of the PKK as regards a cessation of hostilities? Why did they ignore PKK’s position on the matter altogether?

And the same can be said of the jackass who passes for the “US embassy official in Ankara” who spoke to the author of the IWPR piece. Are we to believe that the diplomatic jackass had absolutely no clue about Hasan Cemal’s series? I find that impossible to believe. The Americans know very well but have their own reasons for keeping the fighting going and those reasons are $$$$$.

The jackass continues:

Unlike the KRG, the United States endorses military action as part of a broader solution to the conflict. A US embassy official in Ankara told IWPR Washington’s strategy to end the fighting included supporting Turkey “with intelligence sharing and other operations”.

The Washington regime supports a losing strategy because its military-industrial complex benefits from it by the billions and, for this reason alone, the US has no reason to see an end to the fighting.

The US stepped up its engagement in the region in 2007 by classifying the PKK as a terrorist organisation – a move which effectively bars the group from any potential US-backed peace talks.

That’s plain bullshit. If the US wanted peace talks, the US would overlook its bogus “List” and start to force the issue of negotiations.

“The PKK has conducted more than enough violent acts to justify being labelled a terrorist organisation,” said the US official, when asked whether the move to proscribe the group may have weakened prospects for an eventual settlement by affirming Turkey’s military strategy.

We should acquiesce to this statement, shouldn’t we, since it’s uttered by a member of the world’s biggest terrorist organization–the Washington regime–whose violent acts make even the Ankara regime’s violent acts pale in comparison. Of course, if it had been Americans in the position of Kurds in Turkey there would have been no uprising against repression because Americans are sheep. On the other hand, if they had engaged in uprising, they, too, would be terrorists.

To rise up against severe repression and gross human rights abuses is not terrorism. It’s a natural reaction.

More from the jackass:

The US official stressed that military operations alone would not solve the conflict. She said leaders in the region were working towards “a comprehensive solution that includes other aspects of the Kurdish issue”, such as economic and social development.

“Military operations alone would not solve the conflict,” but that’s the only option either the Washington or the Ankara regime considers. Again: $$$$$$. Let’s also note that it was immediately after Obama’s visit to Turkey that the Ankara regime engaged in terror operations against the DTP, arresting its members in the same way that it arrested members of every other pro-Kurdish political party in Turkey’s atrocious history. Doesn’t that make it look very much like the Americans gave the green light for the terror operations?

And I’d like to know which “leaders in the region” are working to solve the Kurdish issue? Does this mean the Turkish security forces who rounded up the DTP politicians and workers? Does this mean the AKP who went all over The Southeast in the days before the 29 March electcion, handing out washing machines, refrigerators and cash?

But Barkey says the US “has not been as energetic as it could have been” in pursuing a resolution of the conflict.

Oh but the US has been very energetic in pursuing a military resolution, particularly when it appointed Lockheed Martin board of directors’ member Joseph Ralston as its “special envoy” to coordinate the PKK for Turkey. Again: $$$$$

However, the KRG has kept its forces out of the conflicts, claiming it does not have the means or the grounds to retaliate.

“The KRG can’t attack or oust PJAK and PKK because [Iran and Turkey’s] problem is not with the KRG,” said Jabbar Yawar, a top official in charge of Kurdish forces.

This isn’t quite the truth, is it? The fact of the matter is that the pesmerge know they got their asses kicked by PKK when they teamed up with TSK in the 1990s to annihilate the guerrillas and they don’t want to do that again. At the time, Turkey itself tucked its tail between its legs and ran back across the border dragging its body bags behind it.

Yawar said Kurdish troops can defend the borders “if there are any ground assaults, but not against bombardments and aerial strikes”.

Well, that’s not quite true either. It was PKK who defended the border during TSK’s February 2007 land invasion and not the peşmêrge.

The KRG has long ruled out military action against the rebels, as demanded by Turkey and Iran. It has also avoided retaliating against its neighbours, as demanded by the Kurdish street.

The KRG rules out military action because the peşmêrge remembered what happened to them the last time they went to get a piece of PKK. If the Americans are so gung-ho to settle this situation for Ankara, let them go to the mountains and give it a try! A word of warning, however: You have to leave your Bradley’s behind. Whatever you need, you’ll have to carry on your back. Good luck and thank you for giving your lives for Atatürk’s descendents.

There’s also mention of the “Kurdish” conference in this piece:

In March, Iraq’s president and the leader of one of its two major Kurdish parties, Jalal Talabani, announced plans for an international peace conference drawing together the region’s Kurdish political groups.

The conference could have seen the triumphant climax of the KRG’s careful diplomacy if, as many had hoped, it yielded a declaration demanding the PKK and PJAK disarm.

But the meeting, due to have been hosted in Iraqi Kurdistan, was postponed. The reasons behind the cancellation are unclear. However, the delay has highlighted the problems the KRG faces as it seeks to promote peace beyond its borders.

TSK’s been demanding PKK’s disarmament for decades; the KRG will have the same luck as TSK in doing the same. However, the reasons behind the cancellation of the “Kurdish” conference are crystal clear: DTP won massively over AKP on 29 March and that means that the “Kurdish” conference, demanded by AKP and the Americans, would not be the proper vehicle for a joint Turkish-American demand for disarmament if DTP were sitting at the same table wearing their victory laurels.

No, there is nothing at all mysterious about the indefinite postponement of the “Kurdish” conference. Nor is there anything mysterious about this piece in IWPR; it’s propaganda for the status quo.

To read more on how the media promotes the status quo, take a look at an analysis by Sibel Edmonds on how Newsweek deliberately screwed up reporting her case, in order to make her look less credible than she actually is. You’ll find it at the first in her series on Project Expose MSM.

FIGHTING TO THE END AND EXPANDING THE WAR

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on June 3, 2009 by Mizgîn
“We will be forced to continue a war of defence. Such a war would be different from the period before 1 June.”
~ Nurettin Sofi, HPG Headquarters Commander.

The ATC conference is ongoing in Washington through tomorrow and İlker Başbuğ is in attendanceç On Monday night, Başbuğ revealed Turkey’s intentions with regard to the Kurdish question:

“Therefore, we are very much determined to fight against the terrorist organization until its total elimination. This fight is a long-term effort, and it requires patience,” he said.

Başbuğ has been meeting with the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Admiral Mullen and we can assume that they are working out the details of Turkey coming to US aid in Afghanistan/Pakistan. Any deal on this issue will require a counter-deal from the US and that counter-deal will focus on PKK, especially since the Ankara-Washington “Kurdish” conference has been indefinitely nixed, thanks to DTP’s success in the 29 March elections. Bet on some new fly in the ointment for the future, in spite of the recent publicity that Hasan Cemal’s series from Kandil generated.

I mean, if that got your hopes up, you’re a real tenderfoot anyway. There is only one way to solve Turkey’s most serious problem.

And so much for Gül’s less than impressive remarks that the Kurdish situation is Turkey’s most serious problem. Such is an obvious statement of fact, the acknowledgement of which does not mean that there will be any steps of goodwill from the Ankara regime. In August 2005, Katil Erdoğan went to Amed [Diyarbakır] and promised to deal with the Kurdish situation by applying more democracy. The opposite happened: after the Amed Serhildan seven months later, repression and murder became, once again, the order of the day.

Following that example, we should expect more repression from the regime as an answer to the Kurdish situation and we have seen the beginning of that in the recent arrests of DTP members.

Meanwhile, HPG Headquarters Commander Nurettin Sofi countered Başbuğ’s statement:

HPG commander Nurettin Sofi announced that “if the attitude of the government and the army does not change, there will be an intensification.”

Speaking to the Fırat News Agency (ANF), Sofi said, “We will be forced to continue a war of defence. Such a war would be different from the period before 1 June.

He threatened a spread of fighting throughout Turkey.

Mark the last two sentences there and pay attention! Like I said above, there is only one way to solve Turkey’s most serious problem.

Sofi points out that which I have pointed out here in the last few weeks, that TSK operations against HPG continue in The Southeast. On top of that, we all know what Başbuğ means when he says that Turkey will fight PKK to the end:

. . . [S]ince March, the area has been home to backhoes and salvaging equipment. What was once unheard of is now happening in southeastern Turkey — in Cizre, in Silopi, in Kustepe and wherever else local lawyers have filled a petition to have the “death wells” opened. Turkish officials have now started to dig for the remains of Kurds who have disappeared. But the digging also means working through one of the darkest chapters in this country’s history, when Turkish security forces waged a dirty war against supporters of the PKK and its suspected supporters.

Throughout the 1980s and 1990s, thousands of civil rights activists, politicians and businesspeople suspected of having ties with the PKK were kidnapped and murdered. No one knows their exact number, and it was only in rare cases that the victims were even identified. Many corpses were dumped into wells; others were doused in acid and thrown into fields. The horror of the sight was meant to serve as a deterrent. But the majority disappeared without a trace and are still listed as missing.

[ . . . ]

Other former henchmen of the state, such as Tuncay Güney and Yildirim Begler, are now talking about the war against the PKK. From the safety of exile in Canada, Sweden and Norway, men like these recount the names of the victims and the places where their mass graves can be found. They describe the bestial interrogation methods and the orders to kill that always came “from the very top.” They talk about how the gendarmes would bathe the dead in acid baths and make them disappear in wells. And they never fail to mention the type of cars the Jitem usually used: white models of the Renault 12-based “Toros” manufactured in Turkey between the 1970s and 1990s. When the angels of death appeared in their white cars, inhabitants knew that one of their friends or neighbors would be disappearing soon.

At this point, HPG has extended its ceasefire until 15 July and we shall see what happens. Until then, this is a good time to prepare for any eventuality, which is exactly what I believe our comrades are doing.