Three more families have joined the ongoing protest against the YPG/PKK terror group in Diyarbakır in southeast Turkey.
Naile Aykut, the mother of 24-year-old İsmail, said her son was kidnapped by the terror group two years ago while attending a preparatory course for university entrance exams.
“I want my son back. The HDP (Peoples' Democratic Party) and YPG/PKK deceived my son. I will stay here until my son returns,” she said.
Another mother, Guli Turan, demanded the return of her 23-year-old daughter Alev.
Stressing that there was no difference between the HDP and YPG/PKK terror group, Turan said she would not leave the protest until her daughter comes back.
Şemsettin Özcan and Şahinaz Özcan joined the protest for their son Atilla, 22, who they said was kidnapped twice by YPG/PKK terrorists.
They said Atilla had escaped and surrendered to Turkish security forces but was abducted again in 2016.
“The HDP took my son. We will continue protesting and will not leave until the HDP gives our son back to us,” the father said.
The sit-in protests are seen as a reaction against the outlawed PKK, a terror group that has abducted and recruited their children, as well as the HDP, a political party which many of these families view as in league with the PKK.
The protest started when Hacire Akar turned up at the doorstep of the HDP's Diyarbakır office one night. A week later, on Sept. 3, 2019, families inspired by Akar transformed her solo stance into a collective sit-in protest. Akar's son Mehmet returned home on Aug. 24, showing people that there is still hope.
The HDP, long facing public backlash and judicial probes over its ties to the PKK, is under pressure due to this growing civilian protest movement. Various groups from around Turkey have supported the Kurdish mothers in their cause, with many paying visits to show their support.
The HDP is also known for encouraging young people to join the terrorist organization. That is to say, children abducted by the PKK are first radicalized by the HDP. The would-be recruits are then used as an instrument for propaganda and are forced to work. Specialists define four stages of radicalization, the first of which is brainwashing, thereby encouraging the young to join the terrorist organization. This is followed by the armament, violation and finally, leaving to join the organization in the mountains.
The number of families at the protest has steadily increased in recent months, and all of them are demanding the return of their children, whom they claim were deceived or kidnapped by the terror group.
Once the terrorists surrender, they are provided with many opportunities including access to education and the freedom to live without fear and oppression.
They are treated well, allowed to contact their families and given access to a lawyer. The judicial process will be held.
The Turkish state offers a variety of services to ensure their integration into society.
The surrendered teenagers said they were threatened with torture by the senior operatives of the terror group if they dared to flee.
In 2011, families whose children were kidnapped by the PKK terrorist organization once again gathered for a sit-in protest in Diyarbakır to show their discontent toward HDP officials.
Nongovernmental organization representatives were also present at the protest and pointed out that abducting a child for war and conflict falls under the U.N.'s category of crimes against humanity. Accusing the HDP of being indifferent to the fact that children are being handed guns and trained for war, the protesters voiced their anger and asked for the government's help.
In July, the PKK and its Syrian affiliate, the YPG, admitted recruiting children between the ages of 11 and 16 for terrorist activities in a meeting with a U.N. representative.
In its more than 35-year terror campaign against Turkey, the YPG/PKK, listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and European Union, has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants. The YPG is the PKK’s Syrian offshoot.
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