Calls for emergency aid to Nusaybin as curfew enters 12th day

Diyarbakır Bar Association President Tahir Elci has announced that locals in Mardin’s Nusaybin district have been facing a huge security threat from the unabating clashes between the terrorist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and Turkish security forces since Nov. 13.

Nusaybin Co-mayor Cengiz Kok also made a call for emergency aid for the people of Nusaybin. “Each passing day in Nusaybin is a loss for humanity. Join and do something right now. It is time to mobilize against injustice and unlawfulness. The city has no more patience left for another loss of life,” Kok said.

A group of lawyers from the Diyarbakır and Mardin bar associations, including their presidents, held a joint press conference on Monday, in which Elci expressed his concerns about the days-long curfew that has nearly turned the district into an open prison for the locals, adding, “The people of Nusaybin are in peril.”

“Basic needs aren’t even being provided. For 12 days, electricity and water have not been supplied to the people. Some sewer pipes have burst. Garbage in the streets cannot be collected. There is no access to bread, medicine and food. With such deficiencies, every hour that passes will heavily harm locals’ health,” Elci said.

Stressing that the curfew lacks any legal basis, Elci continued, saying: “The people of Nusaybin are waiting for help. The current security measures only serve to victimize the locals and exacerbate the Kurdish problem by bringing the issue to a stalemate.”

The Kurdish issue began more than 30 years ago, when Kurds launched an effort to gain equal rights through both politics and an armed campaign marked by terrorism.

According to unofficial reports, eight have been killed and dozens of others wounded in Nusaybin in the recent clashes.

The Primary to Secondary Education (TEOG) exams in Nusaybin, planned to be held on Wednesday and Thursday, were rescheduled to Dec. 12 and 13 due to the intense clashes. Hundreds of students in the district have been deprived of their right to education.

Special security zones just a new form of emergency rule

The Diyarbakır Governor’s Office declared on Monday the Cukurca and Semdinli districts of Hakkari province as “special security zones,” a new name for the infamous Emergency Rule Regions (OHAL) of the 1990s. As of August, there are more than 100 of these zones in east and southeast Turkey.

The two districts will remain under special order for the next two weeks. Both entering and leaving the two areas is forbidden.

On Monday, police detained 14 demonstrators in İzmir’s Konak Square for protesting the ongoing curfew and the declaration of Cukurca and Semdinli as “special security zones.” The demonstrators were detained after they defied orders from police to end their protest. Among the detainees were Konak Co-mayor Mahsun Koc and several administrative figures from the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP).


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