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UA 195/94 - Turkey: "disappearance": Havva Tasdemir, Sabiha Tasdemir, Zozan Tekdag, Asiye Banisi, Mehmet Tekdag

, رقم الوثيقة: EUR 44/039/1994

The five people named above have "disappeared" after being detained on 16 May 1994 by gendarmerie in their village of Yukari Duru (Kurdish: Derkam) in Diyarbakir province. According to an eye-witness account, the village was raided during the early hours of 16 May. The soldiers apparently burned the houses, the village school and the schoolteacher's lodge, before taking away the four young women and the shepherd, Mehmet Tekdag. Very intense security force activity has been reported in the area between Bingol, Lice and Diyarbakir with 16 deaths and three "disappearances" of villagers reported since 26 April 1994.

EXTERNAL (for general distribution) AI Index: EUR 44/39/94
Distr: UA/SC
UA 195/94 "Disappearance" 19 May 1994
TURKEY Havva Ta_demir, female, aged 14
Sabiha Ta_demir, female, aged 15
Zozan Tekda_, female, aged 15
Asiye Banisi, female, aged 19
Mehmet Tekda_, shepherd, aged 58
The five people named above have "disappeared" after being detained on 16 May
by gendarmerie (soldiers carrying out police duties in rural areas) in their
village Yukar_ Duru (Kurdish: Derkam) in the province of Diyarbak_r. The
following is an eye-witness account:
"On 16 May 1994 our village, of 30 families, was raided in the early hours
of the morning by nine military vehicles full of soldiers who came up the road
from Duru village. As soon as they entered the village, they made us all come
out of our houses. They then began to drag our things out of the houses. They
searched the houses very carefully but found nothing. We saw some of the solders
take something out of their pockets and leave it in the houses. We didn't
understand what it was, at first, but when they said, `We have found leaflets
in your houses' we understood what they were up to.
They began to set the houses on fire, one by one. They also burned the village
school and the schoolteacher's lodge. They then took four girls from the village:
Havva Ta_demir (14), Sabiha Ta_demir (15), Zozan Tekda_ (15), Asiye Banisi
(19) and the village shepherd Mehmet Tekda_ (58) and put them at the fork to
Comala_ village. At about 9am the soldiers took another group of about 100
women and children and put them on the other side of the village, near Talhe
Xale Hesen stream.
At evening time, about 20 military vehicles, which we assumed to be from Lice
gendarmerie post, came as reinforcements. They did not let the children or
women drink from the stream, even though they were thirsty. Later that evening,
at about 8pm they took away the four young women and Mehmet Tekda_. The soldiers
behaved as if they were really enjoying themselves, they were clapping.
After they had gone, we returned to our houses. It was a terrible sight. All
the houses were burned until they were uninhabitable. They had left nothing
for us to wear or to eat. There was nothing apart from a few bits of furniture.
Two of us were able to get away. The other villagers cannot leave the village.
We have heard no news of those who were taken away."
Another eye-witness has stated that the five detainees had been put in an
eight-wheeled armoured vehicle which later that evening was seen waiting in
front of the gendarmerie post in Duru village. By that time it was dark and
it was not known whether they were unloaded there.
On the morning of 19 May the mothers of the "disappeared" girls were reported
to be sitting outside the Gendarmerie Headquarters in Lice in search of news
of their daughters.
Very intense security force activity is reported in the area between Bingöl,
Lice and Diyarbak_r, with 16 deaths and three "disappearances" of villagers
reported to the Human Rights Association in Diyarbak_r since 26 April 1994.
2
BACKGROUND INFORMATION
The conflict in southeast Turkey between government forces and guerrillas of
the Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) has claimed more than 11,500 lives since it
began in August 1984. A state of emergency remains in force in 10 provinces
in the region and the Emergency Legislation Governor in Diyarbakir has
extraordinary powers over another three provinces. Military operations have
been intensified since the beginning of 1994, and in addition to daily armed
clashes, the security forces are carrying out intense operations against
villages which refuse to participate in the system of village guards. These
operations have resulted in allegations of torture, "disappearance" and
extrajudicial execution.
In February 1993 it was announced that the State of Emergency Coordination
Council had decided that villages which might support the PKK or be open to
PKK attack should be evacuated. The Emergency Region Governor has powers to
evacuate residential areas using formal procedures which would include
compensation and provision of alternative places of settlement. However, the
current program of forced eviction is being conducted unofficially and in an
arbitrary manner, accompanied by threats, intimidation, ill-treatment and
destruction of livestock, food and property.
In May 1994, the Interior Minister for the first time officially acknowledged,
in reply to a parliamentary question, that a total of 871 villages and
settlements had "become empty" in the region under a State of Emergency, "due
to various reasons" and that "immigration from rural areas... has occurred".
RECOMMENDED ACTION: Please send telegrams/telexes/faxes/express and airmail
letters either in English or in your own language:
- expressing grave concern for the fate of the four young women and the shepherd
Mehmet Tekda_ from Yukar_ Duru village near Lice who were detained together
with by soldiers on 16 May 1994 and taken to an unknown destination;
- calling for an immediate investigation into their whereabouts and state of
health;
- urging that their families are informed of their whereabouts without delay;
- requesting to be informed of the results of the investigation.
APPEALS TO
1) Chief of Staff of the Gendarmerie:
Orgeneral Ayd_n _lter
Jandarma Kuvvetleri Komutanl___
Bakanl_klar
Ankara, Turkey
Telegrams: Jandarma Genel Komutani, Ankara, Turkey
Faxes: +90 312 418 0476
Salutation: Dear General
2) Minister of the Interior:
Mr Nahit Mente_e
Içi_leri Bakanl___
Bakanl_klar
06644 Ankara, Turkey
Telegrams: Icisleri Bakanligi, Ankara, Turkey
Faxes: +90 312 418 1795
3
Salutation: Dear Minister
COPIES OF YOUR APPEALS TO:
President of the Parliamentary Human Rights Commission:
Mr Sabri Yavuz
_nsan Haklar_ Ara_t_rma Komisyonu Ba_kan_
TBMM
Ankara, Turkey
Faxes: +90 312 420 5394
and to diplomatic representatives of Turkey accredited to your country
PLEASE SEND APPEALS IMMEDIATELY. Check with the International Secretariat,
or your section office, if sending appeals after 1 July 1994.

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