Number of Kurdish parents protesting PKK reaches 57 as another family joins

Published 21.11.2019 19:39
Updated 20.12.2019 01:50

Another family on Thursday joined an ongoing protest by Kurdish families in front of the pro-PKK People’s Democratic Party (HDP) headquarters in southeastern Turkey’s Diyarbakır province against PKK terrorists for the abduction of their children. With this addition, the number of families protesting against the PKK reached 57.

Mehmet Aytekin came from eastern Elazığ province in hopes of finding his brother Hüseyin Aytekin, who was kidnapped four years ago.

"I don't think he went on his own free will. We spoke four months after he left. He didn't say where he was, just said he was alright. After that, we never spoke again," Aytekin told Anadolu Agency.

Aytekin joined the protest on its 80th day.

The sit-in has been ongoing since Sept. 3. Initially, a lone mother, Hacire Akar, started the protest in front of the offices of the HDP in Diyarbakır in September. Akar wanted her 21-year-old son Mehmet Akar, who had been missing for three days after he was abducted by the PKK terrorist group, to be returned to her. Following her sit-in, and with the help of security forces in Diyarbakır, Akar was finally reunited with her son.

"So many young people are dying in the mountains and in Syria for nothing. Not only my brother, but lots of young people are in this situation. I want my brother back," Aytekin said.

"We've been here for 80 days. We are anxiously waiting for our children. What happened to our children? We don't know if they're alive or dead," one of the mothers, Fatma Bingöl, said.

Bingöl joined the protest for her son, Tuncay Bingöl, who was kidnapped by PKK terrorists five years ago when he was 14 years old.

"I call on all the other parents: Support us and raise a voice for us. Everybody must defend their own rights. They should also come here to fight and ask for their own children. They should not be afraid of anything," she added.

Similar events have taken place in the past and have continued since the PKK launched its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, which has led to the deaths of some 40,000 people, including women, children and infants. In 2011, families whose children were kidnapped by the PKK terrorist organization gathered for a sit-in protest in Diyarbakır to show their discontent toward HDP officials.

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