Kurdish teen killed at PKK funeral in
June 8, 2012
PKK funereal in the Kurdish region in southeastern
DIYARBAKIR, The Kurdish region of Turkey,
— A 15-year-old Kurdish boy was killed and one man
wounded in Turkey's troubled southeast after gunfire
erupted during the funeral of a Kurdish separatist
militant, a local official said on Thursday.
The incident late on Wednesday occurred a day after
Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan held a
landmark meeting with Kemal Kilicdarolgu, leader of
the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP),
setting aside differences to thrash out a common
approach to ending the long-running conflict.
There were conflicting accounts about who opened
fire on the funeral procession in the Kurdish town
of Yusekova near the border with Iraqi Kurdistan
region after it turned into a rally in support of
the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), a militant group
that took up arms against the Turkish state in the
District official Aziz Uzeyir Ozeren told reporters
at the town in Hakkari province that PKK gunmen,
wearing civilian clothes rather than their usual
green fatigues, fired on protesters to stir trouble.
Firat News, a website close to the PKK, said police
Teenager Ozgur Tasar was killed and Veysel Yildirim,
34, was wounded, Ozeren said.
Tensions are bubbling up anew in Turkey's mainly
Kurdish southeast as the PKK steps up attacks
following a spring thaw.
For its part, the government has taken a harder
stance against the PKK over the past year, halting
state contacts with the militant group and arresting
members of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK) for
alleged ties to the PKK.
Turkey has also warned Syria against encouraging PKK
attacks as payback for Ankara's strong stand in
support of a popular uprising against President
In a separate incident late on Wednesday, PKK
militants kidnapped three people, including a
soldier, near the town of Lice in Diyarbakir
province in Turkey Kurdistan (northern Kurdistan),www.ekurd.net
security sources said.
A group of militants set up a roadblock and stopped
about 30 vehicles to check identification cards
before taking the soldier and two others captive,
they said. Security forces have launched an
operation in the area to rescue the hostages.
The PKK has scaled back its demands for an
independent homeland to some political autonomy for
Turkey's estimated to over 20 million ethnic Kurds.
But a political solution appears difficult as
thousands of Kurdish politicians and activists have
been arrested in recent years and remain in prison
during their trials on charges connected with
supporting the PKK.
On Thursday, police detained six mayors belonging to
the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party, including
the mayor of the city of Van, on charges of links
with the PKK.
The PKK has several times proposed peaceful solutions regarding Kurdish problem,
Turkey has always refused saying that it will not negotiate with “terrorists”.
Since it was established in 1984, the PKK has been
fighting the Turkish state, which still denies the
constitutional existence of Kurds, to establish a
Kurdish state in the south east of the country, sparking a conflict that has claimed some 45,000
But now its aim is the creation an autonomous
and more cultural rights for ethnic Kurds who
constitute the greatest minority in Turkey,
numbering more than 20 million. A large Turkey's
Kurdish community openly sympathise with the Kurdish PKK rebels.
PKK's demands included releasing PKK detainees,
lifting the ban on education in Kurdish, paving the
way for an autonomous democrat Kurdish system within
Turkey, reducing pressure on the detained PKK leader
Abdullah Öcalan, stopping military action against
the Kurdish party and recomposing the Turkish
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
The PKK is considered as 'terrorist' organization by
Ankara and 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.
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