By Elke Dangeleit, Telepolis (Germany), Dec 16, 2015, translated to English by New Cold War.org
The war of the Turkish military in its own country: City of Diyarbakir under fire in eastern Turkey
The situation in the Kurdish cities has escalated. The population fears the preparation of a massacre by the Turkish military. Tens of thousands of residents are fleeing Diyarbakir.
Clashes are escalating between the residents and the Turkish police and army. Residents fear that a major attack by the military is imminent. But there is some evidence, reports Kurdish media.
In the Kurdish cities and municipalities of Cizre and Silopi, the Turkish state withdrew 3,000 teachers last weekend. They were exempted indefinitely, the schools closed. The Ministry of Education sent text messages to teachers encouraging them to leave the region for “training” and return to their Turkish home towns.
There are also reports that Turkish health personnel have been withdrawn. On the other hand, the state hospitals were in an official letter instructed, “ready to hold” their personnel and all materials.
Troops will be deployed in large numbers in the Kurdish regions
In Şırnak, Turkish troops were stationed in all districts. In Silopi more than 150 armored military vehicles are stationed at intersections and strategic points. At the Şerafettin Elçi airport (near Cizre), several transport planes landed with soldiers and military equipment.
Between Şırnak and Cizre, five new checkpoints have been set up, and more between Silopi, Idil and Güçlükonak. The Turkish military have improved roads that connect Şırnak and Cizre and Silopi. There are new checkpoints between Idil and Güclükkonak.
A curfew has been imposed as of December 14 in the areas around Cizre and Silopi. Specifically, this means that residents can’t leave their houses day or night because everything that moves is shot at. But the civilian population is obliged to leave their homes in order to provide themselves with drinking water and food.
Many residents of the Kurdish regions – as in the 1980s and 1990s – are packing their belongings and fleeing “arrests, raids, curfews, extrajudicial executions and bombings”, reports the ISKU (Information Agent of Kurdistan). Various media report that now over 200,000 people from the region are on the run. Their goal: Europe. So Turkish President Erdogan is creating further refugee flows to Europe.
More than 10,000 residents to leave Diyarbakir (kurd. Amed)
More than 10,000 residents of Diyarbakir are set to leave the city. These are mainly the residents of the historic area of Amed-Sur, where fighting between the people and the military are is particularly violent in recent days. Amed-Sur is one of the poorest districts of Diyarbakir, as well as one of the tourist districts because of its many historic buildings.
There is well-organized, self-government structures of the Turkish government with the idea of a centralized presidential system preclude. Meanwhile, the clashes have extended to eight districts of Diyarbakir, the unofficial capital of the Kurds, for example in the southern city district Bağlar. There, the two youth Şerdıl Cengiz (21) and Şiyar Salman (18) were killed on Monday morning.
Residents have erected barricades and set them on fire. The population is protesting noisily with pots and slogans. On Tuesday, the two murdered young people were buried accompanied by tens of thousands of people.
Tanks have been deployed in Diyarbakir. And in the city of Nusaybin, there was fierce fighting: special police units have positioned themselves with armored vehicles and have loudly information opens the ISKU artillery fire on the neighborhood Fırat, Abdülkadirpaşa, Dicle and Yenişehir.
A conflict between the PKK and the Turkish state?
So far, the PKK [Workers Party of Kurdistan] response to the government escalation has been limited to statements. Actions against the Turkish military have come from other resistance organizations. What is often swept under the carpet is that there are Turkish/Kurdish leftist organizations other than the PKK which pursue their own goals. Their actions are then blamed on the PKK. In our [German] media, events in eastern Turkey are presented solely as conflict between the PKK and the Turkish military.
In fact, it is the people in the Kurdish cities, mainly young people and women, who are defending their cities and local governments against the military and special units of Erdogan. For example, women in Cizre build barricades with this statement: “It is not the PKK building barricades, it is us.”
Meanwhile, threats by Turkish Prime Minister Davutoglu against Kurdish cities and their populations continue. “We will transform the cities of Cizre and Silopi into liberated zones…”
“We have adopted the curfews, so that the terrorist organization (meaning the PKK) can cause no harm to the local people, “said Davutoglu. In a speech on December 14, he spoke of “cleaning up” the neighborhoods where there are barricades and resistance from “terrorists”.
As before, this comes to a fundamental paradigm in Turkey. Are all citizens of Turkey “Turks”, or is Turkey is a multiethnic state with different ethnic groups, with Turkic peoples, Kurds, Armenian and other ethnic groups? If so, then these groups need to be recognized and get an equal status in the political structures.
What about regional autonomies as an ultimate solution? Erdogan is worlds away from such consideration. Yet in Europe, there are many examples of this: in South Tyrol, in Switzerland; the Danish minority in Schleswig-Holstein; the Sorbs in Germany; the Basques in Spain; etc.
If Europe is to have Turkey as a member state, there is no way around the fact that Turkey must recognize their minorities and accord to them corresponding rights.
Note by New Cold War.org:
 The smaller cities of Cizre, Silopi, Sirnak and Nusaybin are located 200-300 km east and southeast of the city of Diyabakir in east-central Turkey. Diyabakir is the unofficial capital of the Kurdish people of Turkey.
* The Kurdish ANF news agency reports extensively on developments on its English language website, including that leaders of the HDP party are being targeted by the Turkish government offensive: http://anfenglish.com/
“The number of journalists jailed in Turkey has dramatically risen in 2015, according to a special report by the New York-based Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ). The report noted that 199 journalists were imprisoned worldwide in 2015, with China and Egypt ranking as the world’s first and second worst jailers of journalists.
“Turkey ranked as the fifth worst jailer of journalists globally in 2015, with 14 journalists currently behind the bars in the country…”
Among the journalists in jail in Turkey is a prominent editor of Cumhuriyet News.