The Turkish government violently dispersed thousands of Kurdish demonstrators in Diyarbakir, Turkey’s largest predominantly Kurdish populated town.
Turkish police used tear gas and water cannons indiscriminately against the Kurdish demonstrators, while some of the protesters fought back by throwing stones at riot police vehicles, RT said.
According to Turkish media, the public rally was organized by the Democratic Regions Party (DBP), pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP), the Democratic Society Congress and a number of pro-Kurdish NGOs.
People gathered in the city’s central district to protest against a curfew, which has been in effect in the city since December 2, and attempted to march through the streets of the city’s Sur district. The police, however, quickly blocked the demonstrators and began dispersing the crowd using violent methods.Urgent Call for Solidarity & Action frm Diyarbakir Mayor @GultanKisanak on current situation https://t.co/89SoxLBOx8 pic.twitter.com/52D54oOfts
— Mutlu Civiroglu (@mutludc) December 23, 2015
”Turkish state force again oppressed those peaceful demonstrators… detained tens of people, including an MP from the pro-Kurdish HDP party,” RT cited local resident Harun Ercan as saying.
The Turkish government imposed several curfews in a few southeastern towns citing security concerns amid the clashes between Turkish government forces and fighters of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Local residents have been struggling due curfews and demanded the government to lift them, so they could return to a normal life.Kurdish protesters clash with Turkish police in downtown #Diyarbakir during a rally against the recent curfews impo… pic.twitter.com/kIcC3iJ8GV
— Милан Милошевић (@mobilnimilanmi1) December 20, 2015
”No one can go outside. Our water is running out. The food at home is running out. The telephone lines have been cut. The situation here is terrible,” said Uzay Bulut in an article written for the US-based think-tank Gatestone Institute, citing Osman Tetik, a local resident and representative of the Education and Science Workers’ Union in the town of Cizre.
Bulut added that the Turkish government deployed soldiers, including snipers, who are now guarding the streets of Cizre.
The government announced on Monday that some 214 PKK members were killed in southeastern districts during clashes since December 15, Hurriyet Daily News reported.
However, according to the Human Rights Watch, almost half of these people were civilians, RT said.