‘Nusaybin is a new Cizre’ opposition HDP deputy claims

HDP group vice chair Ahmet Yildirim

“We are witnessing a new Cizre in Nusaybin,” member of Turkey’s Parliament Ahmet Yildirim said in a press conference on Monday.

The People’s Democratic Party (HDP) lawmaker was referring to incidents in Mardin district Nusaybin’s Korukoy village, which has been besieged by security forces since 11 February and from where reports of torture, sexual abuse and killing are coming.

Yildirim said that the events, just as those experienced in Cizre last year, would remain in the collective memory of society.

“Marks of severe torture were found on a body that arrived at the hospital in Mardin. Illiterate women were forced to sign papers they didn’t understand. We are asking the Minister of National Defence and the Ministry of Internal Affairs why people that want to leave the village aren’t allowed to do so. What does it say in the documents that those who are denied to leave are forced to sign?”

Yildirim was critical of the impunity granted to Turkish soldiers just after impunity was lifted from the HDP lawmakers, saying that it resulted in “illegal and inhuman acts in Cizre, Nusaybin and Sur, which paved the way for the 15 July coup attempt.”

“All groups of civil society with a grain of conscience must ask what is going on in Nusaybin. Why are the homes haunted by torture, one by one. Why are all the male adults detained? Why can’t women feed their children? Why are 5,000 animals in the village about to perish? This is happening in Turkey!” the HDP deputy said.

Another HDP deputy, Leyla Birlik, who is part of the delegation trying to enter the village, has confirmed Yildirim’s comments and said they were told by villagers that five people had been killed in Korukoy, with at least one confirmed as a civilian who had suffered from mental illness after being tortured by security forces in the 1990s.

Turkish media has reported the killing of four Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) militants in the area. According to Kurdish sources the bodies of three people was brought to the local morgue on Monday morning, but the IDs of the dead have not been confirmed.

Critics have said Turkey is targeting Kurds as a whole in its fight against the PKK.