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 Six teenagers charged in Turkey over Kurdish unrest

 Source : AFP | Agencies
  Kurd Net does not take credit for and is not responsible for the content of news information on this page

 


Six teenagers charged in Turkey over Kurdish unrest  25.10.2008





October 25, 2008

DIYARBAKIR, Kurdish Southeastern region of Turkey,   Six Kurdish boys, aged 13 and 14, were arrested Friday as part of a probe into violent Kurdish protests here this week, court sources said.

A judge in Diyarbakir, the largest city in Turkey's Kurdish-majority southeast,
www.ekurd.net the boys be detained pending trial on charges of belonging to the Turkey's separatist Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which Turkey lists as a 'terrorist group', and committing crimes on its behalf, the sources said.

The boys were rounded up during a violent demonstration in Diyarbakir Monday in which scores of people took to the streets after lawyers of jailed Kurdish PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan alleged he had been mistreated in prison.

In their testimonies to the court, the boys denied having taken part in the unrest, maintaining they just happened to be in the street and mixed with the crowd in the confusion, the sources said.

The demonstrators hurled sticks and stones at the Turkish police,
www.ekurd.net who responded with tear gas and water cannons.

Children are often seen pelting the police with stones during Kurdish demonstrations, and the authorities say PKK militants are deliberately using minors to tarnish the image of the security forces.

Another 17 minors were among 51 people who were being questioned Friday in Diyarbakir over the unrest.

Officials have categorically denied that Ocalan has been mistreated, and accused the PKK of orchestrating the protests, which erupted at the weekend and spread across the southeast, claiming one life.

Ahmet Ozkan, 26, was killed on Monday during a rally organised by the DTP after clashes erupted between Turkish police and protesters in Dogubeyazit.

Over 39,000 Turkish soldiers and Kurdish PKK guerrillas have been killed since 1984 when the Turkey's Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) took up arms for self-rule in the country's mainly Kurdish southeast of Turkey (Turkey-Kurdistan). A large Turkey's Kurdish community openly sympathise with the Kurdish PKK rebels.

The PKK demanded Turkey's recognition of the Kurds' identity in its constitution and of their language as a native language along with Turkish in the country's Kurdish areas,
the party also demanded an end to ethnic discrimination in Turkish laws and constitution against Kurds, ranting them full political freedoms.

The PKK is considered a 'terrorist' organization by Ankara, U.S., the PKK continues to be on the blacklist list in EU despite court ruling which overturned a decision to place the Kurdish rebel group PKK and its political wing on the European Union's terror list.

Turkey refuses to recognize its Kurdish population as a distinct minority. It has allowed some cultural rights such as limited broadcasts in the Kurdish language and private Kurdish language courses with the prodding of the European Union,
but Kurdish politicians say the measures fall short of their expectations.

Copyright, respective author or news agency, AFP | Agencies

* Turkey refuses to recognize its Kurdish population as a distinct minority. It has allowed some cultural rights such as limited broadcasts in the Kurdish language and private Kurdish language courses with the prodding of the European Union,
but Kurdish politicians say the measures fall short of their expectations.

** Kurds are not recognized as an official minority in Turkey and are denied rights granted to other minority groups. Under EU pressure, Turkey recently granted Kurds limited rights for broadcasts and education in the Kurdish language, but critics say the measures do not go far enough.

The use of the term "Kurdistan" is vigorously rejected due to its alleged political implications by the Republic of Turkey, which does not recognize the existence of a "Turkish Kurdistan" Southeast Turkey.

Others estimate over 40 million Kurds live in Big Kurdistan (Iraq, Turkey, Syria, Iran, Armenia), which covers an area as big as France, about half of all Kurds which estimate to 20 million live in Turkey.

Turkey is home to 25 million ethnic Kurds, a large Turkey's Kurdish community openly sympathise with the Kurdish PKK for a Kurdish homeland in the country's mainly Kurdish southeast of Turkey.

Before August 2002, the Turkish government placed severe restrictions on the use of Kurdish language, prohibiting the language in education and broadcast media. The Kurdish alphabet is still not recognized in Turkey, and use of the Kurdish letters X, W, Q which do not exist in the Turkish alphabet has led to judicial persecution in 2000 and 2003

The Kurdish flag flown officially in Iraqi Kurdistan but unofficially flown by Kurds in Armenia. The flag is banned in Iran, Syria, and Turkey where flying it is a criminal offence" 

Southeastern Turkey: North Kurdistan ( Kurdistan-Turkey) wikipedia    

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