Armed struggle in Turkey/Kurdistan 18/8/2015

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One week ago, YJA STAR commander Kevser Eltürk (nom de guerre Ekin Wan) died in a clash with Turkish security forces in the Varto district of the largely Kurdish Muş province. Security forces stripped her body naked, dragged it through the street with a rope and abandoned it in the village square.

The group New Democratic Woman (YDK) has issued a statement about the incident. “We’re not scared,” began the statement. “Because we know that this state is a murderer, from the villages it has evacuated and the women it has killed under arrest. Because we know that this state is a rapist, from the women whose breasts they have cut up in torture, from the women whose will they tried to break with rape, from the women who were abandoned to sexual torture under arrest and in prison,” said YDK.

“We know this from your unjust dirty wars, which may not have made us ashamed of our bodies, but have made us ashamed of our humanity. We know this from Shengal, from Kobanê. “We see very well that this misogyny of yours comes from the women fighting concessions on the barricades, in the prisons and on the mountains,” the group said. “And so we are not scared of you, and we are not ashamed of our bodies.”

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The women’s urban militant group YDGK-H has called all women to join self-defense efforts in Kurdistan in revenge for the killing and desecration of the body of woman guerrilla Ekin Wan. On August 10, woman guerrilla Ekin Wan was killed in a clash in the Varto district of Northern Kurdistan (Turkey). Ekin Wan (born Kevser Eltürk) was a member of the guerrilla group YJA STAR, affiliated with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). After Ekin’s death, police stripped her body naked and dragged it through the streets with a rope. Ekin’s body was then abandoned in the village square. Police shared photographs of what they had done on social media.

The group Union of Patriotic Revolutionary Young Women (YDGK-H) has called on all women to join the self-defense effort in Kurdistan in revenge for what was done to Ekin Wan. “For years, we have been unashamed of our bodies. For years, this state had tried to scare us with rape, harassment and killing,” said the YDGK-H. “This is how they try to silence women, seize their homes and destroy them. In the face of all of this, we will continue digging our trenches and defending ourselves against the colonial state.” The group announced that they would be seeking revenge for the action. “There will be a settling of accounts with those who did this and with those who ventured to realize this. We know who did this,” said the women. “All YDGK-H units will get revenge on this from every police and special operations officer in Kurdistan.”

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The Turkish military has shelled a village in Şemdinli destroying at least 10 houses. Solders opened fire on civilians carrying out a human shield action in the Lice-Hani-Kocaköy area of Amed, wounding two people. Police opening fire at random on streets of Şemdinli, telephone networks are down and solders have occupied Şemdinli State Hospital. “Electricity is cut off and service by GSM operators remains interrupted since yesterday morning. There is a de facto curfew in effect in the district center where government agencies are closed and the hospital has been evacuated. Yüksekova-Şemdinli road is also closed.”-Co-mayor of Şemdinli Seferi Yılmaz.Communications blackout and curfew in Lice.

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KCK issues press release on recent developments noting: “AKP wildly attacks the Kurdistan people’s self-rule decision that was recently declared in response to the repression, arrests and attacks aiming to break the people’s democratic will. In addition to its failure to take a step and manifest a will for Turkey’s democratization, the AKP is on the other hand trying to crush the local democratic rule of the Kurdish people, which it sees as ‘founding a state within a state’. AKP openly and clearly forces people to accept its centralist, authoritarian and hegemonic political system. The recent conflict and clashes ending up in deaths are undoubtedly taking place due to the attacks of the despotic state against the democratic will of peoples. The policy of the ’90s, during which the uprisings of the people were savagely attacked, is being pursued once again today.”

Solders open fire on civilian car in Tatvan seriously injuring one person. Cizre City Assembly declares ‘self-governance’ and digs defensive trenches throughout the city. Guerrilla attack on Gırê Morê guard post in Amed’s Pasur (Kulp) district. The road between Amed’s Piran (Dicle) and Hani districts blocked by HPG between 20:00 on August 16 and 03:00 on August 17. YJA attacks tank battalion in Lice. Guerrillas also acted against a Turkish army base on a hill between Amed’s Farqin (Silvan) district center and the nearby dam from 3 directions at 18:40 on August 16. At least 5 soldiers died and one A-4, 1 vehicle and 4 positions were completely destroyed. YJA Star guerillas stopped 30 vehicles and checked IDs on the road between Siirt’s Perwari district and Van’s Çatak district between 17:00 and 21:00 on August 16.

HPG reported that guerillas carried out an action against the Ewinê guard post in Mardin’s Stewrê region at 19:15 on August 16. 3 soldiers in watch towers were hit during the actions, and the number of dead or injured soldiers has not yet been clarified HPG stated that Turkish soldiers burned a village mosque, cemetery and several fields in its operation after a guerilla action in Bingöl’s Karlıova district on August 15, and withdrew around 14:30 without yielding any results. Guerillas destroyed a cell tower and the TRT tower in the Kanyan village and city center of Bingöl, respectively, around 22:00 on August 16. HPG announced that 1 soldier died in the guerillas’ assassination action against the Şex Cuma guard post located in Bitlis around 17:00 on August 16.

Guerillas have also been controlling the roads between Bitlis – Tatvan and Tatvan – Hizan since August 12. HPG guerillas blocked a road and checked IDs between Erzurum’s Karayazı and Karaçoban districts between 19:30 and 20:30 on August 16. Guerillas also destroyed a cell tower in the Metrit village of Kars’ Sarıkamış district at 18:00 on August 16, and destroyed 2 tractors, 2 tree saws and 2 mobile phones that belong to a private company that has been cutting trees in the region despite previous HPG warnings.

Guerrillas carried out a sabotage action against an armoured vehicle moving between the Haltun and Tespin villages of Hakkari’s Islahiye region at 10:30 on August 14, completely destroying the vehicle. After this action, Turkish troops launched an operation in Tespinvi, Tandur, Plateau Ovacık, and Plateau Kamter between 11:00 and17.00, and retreated back without getting any results. The Turkish army removed the wreckage of the destroyed vehicle at 18:30. Guerrilla forces carried out a sabotage action against the base and 3 G stations of Turkcell and Avea GSM operators in the Türktöner village of Dersim’s Hozat district on August 16, destroying the stations. Guerrillas also cut the electricity of Amutka military post at 18:40 on August 16. The electricity still remains cut.

Turkish army attempted to launch an operation against the guerrilla held Şapata area located at the Şemdinli-Yüksekova line at between 13:40 and 14:30 on August 16. Guerrillas then hit the armoured vehicles effectively, leaving 4 of them damaged and 1 soldier wounded. Guerrillas closed the road in Nêrduşa area located at the Şemdinli-Yüksekova line between 06:00 and 08:00 on August 16, checked IDs and informed the local people about the ongoing process. Guerrilla forces carried out an action against Garê military post at the border of Xakurke at 14:00 on August 16, and destroyed two targeted emplacements as well as 1 anti-aircraft. Turkish troops from the military post opened random fire on the surrounding area after the guerilla action. While one civilian was wounded as the fires hit the civilian area, the casualties of the Turkish army could not been clarified.

People’s Defence Forces (HPG) Press Office issued a statement yesterday regarding the ongoing activities of Turkish air forces over guerrilla held areas as well as the bombardments launched by Turkish troops against guerrilla zones. Mass arrests yesterday in Hakkari, Mardin, Erzurum, Mersin,İstanbul and Siirt. HDP Menemen Youth Assembly member Murat Kaya shot in the back of the neck in Izmir. Now in critical condition.

“The YPJ fighters in Kobanê, who fought the hardest against the patriarchal mindset, became an example for the whole world. For us, we want to prepare for victory with the strength and morale we’ve gotten from these women..At this point, the people need to see their own strength and bring the revolutionary people’s war to victory.”-Women militant in Silvan.

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