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We are taking back what is ours: Turkish Kurds

A place to talk about domestic politics in Middle East (Iran, Iraq , Turkey, Syria) Also includes topics about Assyrian, Armenian, Chaldean .

We are taking back what is ours: Turkish Kurds

PostAuthor: Anthea » Thu Mar 21, 2019 8:51 pm

Turkey's Erdogan shows mosque
massacre livestream footage AGAIN


Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has once again shown the livestream footage of the Christchurch mosque massacre - a day before New Zealand's foreign minister is due to visit Istanbul

The 65-year-old leader played clips from the horrific video as an election campaign prop despite criticism from officials in Wellington.

On election trail for a March 31 local vote, Erdogan has projected the video and repeatedly referenced the attack that killed 50 people, saying it targeted Islam and Turkey.

New Zealand's Deputy Prime Minister Winston Peters, who is also Minister of Foreign Affairs, is scheduled to visit Istanbul tomorrow. He has protested that politicisation of the massacre 'imperils the future and safety of the New Zealand people and our people abroad, and it's totally unfair'.

The gunman's so-called 'manifesto' mentions Turkey and the minarets of Istanbul's landmark Hagia Sophia, now a museum, that was once a church before becoming a mosque during the Ottoman empire.

At a rally in the northwestern city of Eskisehir, Erdogan again showed both the video and the so-called manifesto in order to attack the main opposition party leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu who had warned against 'terrorism rooted in the Islamic world.'

Turkish president Erdogan shows Christchurch live stream to crowd

Erdogan compared Kilicdaroglu to far-right Australian senator Fraser Anning, who drew ire for blaming the New Zealand attacks on Muslim immigration.

New Zealand authorities moved quickly to try and stop the spread of the shooter's video, warning that anyone sharing the footage faced prosecution, and Facebook removed the images from hundreds of thousands of pages.

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern revealed yesterday that Peters will travel to Turkey to 'confront' comments made by Erdogan on the killing of at least 50 people at mosques in Christchurch.

Australian Brenton Tarrant, 28, a suspected white supremacist, was charged with murder on Saturday after a lone gunman opened fire at the two mosques during Friday prayers.

Brenton Tarrant has been charged with one initial count of murder over the mass shootings that killed 50 people in the southern city of Christchurch and faces life in prison

Erdogan - who is seeking to drum up support for his Islamist-rooted AK Party in March 31 local elections - has said Turkey would make the suspected attacker pay if New Zealand did not.

The comments came at a campaign rally that also included video footage of the shootings. Ardern said Peters would seek urgent clarification.

'Our deputy prime minister will be confronting those comments in Turkey,' Ardern told reporters in Christchurch. 'He is going there to set the record straight, face-to-face.'

Erdogan also triggered tensions with Australia for comments suggesting that Australians and New Zealanders with anti-Muslim views could return home in coffins

Australia said Thursday that progress had been made on mending ties after a spokesman for Erdogan said the president's words earlier this week were 'taken out of context.'

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/articl ... trage.html

In recent years Erdogan has turned Turkey from a secular state into an Islamic State

An Islamic State - where have I heard that phrase before :-?
Last edited by Anthea on Sat Mar 30, 2019 12:38 am, edited 3 times in total.
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We are taking back what is ours: Turkish Kurds

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Re: Erdogan shows mosque massacre footage again

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Mar 26, 2019 11:31 pm

Erdoğan: No one can turn Turkey
into a terror-stricken country again


Turkey will never again see the old days when it suffered from terror attacks, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said, while adding that its economy will not underperform either

“Never again will any power be able to turn Turkey into a country where terrorist organizations are active. Never again will any power cause Turkey’s economy and infrastructure to fall behind the levels it has achieved,” Erdoğan said March 26 at a rally in the eastern Van province of Turkey.

“From now on, Turkey will only talk about unity and brotherhood,” he added.

“We worked hard to solve the problems of our Kurdish brothers and sisters, as well as others, in terms of poverty, rights and freedoms,” he stated.

He said his government faced many risks and introduced reforms that “no one dared to implement before.”

“We liberated our country’s democracy from prohibitions, oppressions, oppressions.”

He reiterated criticisms against the alliance of opposition parties and said “Turkey cannot reach the desired future with the opposition’s mentality.”

Whatever problems Turkey faced were the result of policies of the ones that founded the opposition parties. He was referring to the Nation’s Alliance, formed by Republican People’s Party (CHP) and İYİ (Good) Party.

“On March 31, we will decide on not just mayors, but also how we will leave a country to our children,” he said, adding: “We cannot reach the future with the alliance of these mentalities known for harming the development of our country.”

Erdoğan asked for votes to “make Turkey one of the most developed 10 countries of the world.” “We expect your support to make our country one of the world’s top 10 economies.”

“The Turkish government has achieved introducing reforms on health in the past 15 years which even the U.S. could not manage to succeed,” he said.

Erdoğan said the government would launch a new support program to subsidize livestock breeding in the country.

“Currently, we pay 25 Liras per animal for breeding support. As of next year, we will start to pay 100 Liras for each animal in the herd,” he said.

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/no-one ... gan-142201
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Re: Erdogan shows mosque massacre footage again

PostAuthor: Anthea » Tue Mar 26, 2019 11:35 pm

How Turkey’s Local Elections
Became a Vote on Erdogan

By Selcan Hacaoglu

Turkish leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan won a fresh mandate with sweeping new powers in a double victory in parliamentary and presidential elections last summer. Now, less than a year into his five-year term, he faces a referendum of sorts on his management of the state. With the nation in an economic downturn, Erdogan’s opponents are working together in an effort to deliver a rebuke to him and his Islamist-rooted movement in local elections March 31.

1. What makes this election special?

Turkey’s opposition parties rarely coordinate strategy. But this time, the second largest opposition group in parliament, the People’s Democratic Party, or HDP, which stresses minority rights, opted to sit out significant municipal races beyond its stronghold in the southeast, where Turkey’s Kurdish minority is concentrated. Instead, it is supporting candidates from an opposition bloc led by the larger Republican People’s Party, or CHP. That’s led to competitive races in the capital of Ankara and the commercial hub of Istanbul that threaten the quarter century-long hold on the two cities by Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party and its predecessors.

2. What’s behind the HDP’s move?

It seeks to win back about 100 municipalities in the southeast in which elected mayors have been ousted by the government and hundreds of Kurdish politicians have been jailed for alleged ties to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK. The PKK, which the Turkish government considers a terrorist organization, has battled for an autonomous Kurdish region inside Turkey on and off since 1984. Kurds make up nearly a fifth of Turkey’s population. The HDP has faced a broad crackdown since it won enough votes to enter parliament in 2015.

3. How has Erdogan responded?

As in past elections, Erdogan has appealed to nationalist sentiment with warnings that separatist aspirations among Kurds threaten Turkey’s integrity. In a thinly veiled message to Kurdish politicians, he threatened to replace any municipal official involved in terrorism or a criminal act. Erdogan himself was removed from his office as mayor of Istanbul in 1998 after being convicted of inciting religious hatred, for which he served four months in jail. He has also said that “Ankara is too important to be handed over to people mired in shady businesses,” a reference to allegations by a prosecutor that CHP mayoral candidate Mansur Yavas abused his duty as a lawyer. Yavas has denied any wrongdoing.

4. How bad is the economy?

The country is experiencing its first recession in a decade. Unemployment at the end of 2018 was 13.5 percent, a nine-year high. Rampant inflation forced the government to open food stalls selling discounted goods to insulate the poor from the impact of a currency crash last year. The rout was fueled by a diplomatic standoff with the U.S. over the future of American-backed Kurdish forces in Syria and an American pastor held in Turkey on terrorism charges. Consumer sentiment is at its lowest since the 2008 global financial crisis.

The Reference Shelf

    Related QuickTakes on Turkey’s political, religious and geographical divides, U.S.-Turkey strains, Turkey’s military expansionism, and the Kurds.
    A Congressional Research Service report on Turkey.
    An International Crisis Group report on the Turkey-PKK conflict.
https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles ... -quicktake
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Re: How Turkey’s Local Elections Became a Vote on Erdogan

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Mar 27, 2019 10:22 pm

In Erdogan's pretence at being a loving caring person:

Turkey inaugurates mysterious archaeological
ritual site in bid to draw tourists


Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has officially inaugurated Göbekli Tepe, a site dating back to the 10th millennium BCE, in a bid to boost tourism to the region and raise awareness about its historical significance

In the presence of officials at a special ceremony last weekend, Erdogan called Turkey “an open-air museum,” according to the Ankara-based Anadolu Agency, and declared 2019 the “Year of Göbekli Tepe” in honor of the 12,000-year-old archaeological site.
Pillar with the sculpture of a predatory animal

Turkish officials hope the site will draw throngs of tourists and provide an economic boost to the country.

Believed by some scholars to be the world’s oldest temple, Göbekli Tepe – which means “Potbelly Hill” in Turkish and is located in the southeastern province of Şanlıurfa – predates Stonehenge by some 6,000 years. The complex features massive pillars, ancient trash pits and fertility figurines made out clay, as well as intricate sculptures depicting animals.

The ruins were first unearthed in 1963 following a survey conducted by anthropologists from Istanbul University and the University of Chicago. However, it was not until 1994, when the late German archaeologist Klaus Schmidt examined the site in depth, that its significance began to come to light.

Actually wrong: a Kurdish farmer found a rock in his field that he was unable to move. He asked friends for help and as they dug down discovered the rocks size and sought advice.

“Göbekli Tepe is an absolutely amazing site,” said Dr. Robert M. Schoch, director of the Institute for the Study of the Origins of Civilization at Boston University. “Certainly, it ranks among the top archaeological wonders of the world, and in my assessment is one of the most important archaeological discoveries – perhaps the most important – of modern times.”

According to Schoch, the site “overturns the standard story which states that civilization first developed a mere 5,000 to 6,000 years ago,” and “demonstrates the hallmarks of civilization, such as monumental stone architecture that required well-organized social structures, symbolic notation and sophisticated knowledge underlying the orientation and erection of the structures.”

He added that Göbekli Tepe is making experts “rethink” the origins of civilization.

“It is now evident that civilization developed prior to the end of the last Ice Age. However, this early civilization suffered a mighty setback resulting from the severe climatic changes and accompanying havoc…. It would take another 6,000 years for humanity to rebuild and regain the level of sophistication that we see at Göbekli Tepe.”

While many have referred to the temple as the world’s oldest place of worship, Dr. Ted Banning, a professor of anthropology at the University of Toronto, disputes the claim and believes the ancient structures found there might have simply been houses for people rather than gods.

“Clearly, the Turkish government has taken the view that the temple’s claim is good for tourism,” said Banning, who has conducted research at the site.

“There is no doubt that that has had great resonance with the public, as dozens of websites with rather outlandish claims about the site attest,” he went on. “Really, the only aspects of the site that lead people to think these are temples are that, one, the buildings are quite big; two, some of the pillars are quite massive; and three, there is art on many of the pillars.”

Banning notes that a significant amount of rubbish deposits from food processing and the making of stone tools was discovered at Göbekli Tepe, things “archaeologists routinely find” at the sites of Neolithic settlements.

“I think the site demonstrates that the early Neolithic people there (and probably at other nearby sites, such as Karahan Tepe) already had a higher degree of social complexity than archaeologists had suspected,” he explained.

Despite disagreeing on the area being a temple, he believed the ancient culture there “had rich ideology and complex social structure” and “invested a lot of effort in building monumental houses.”

Despite ongoing disputes over its original purpose, many local and international tour agencies are including the site in their programming ahead of what is expected to be a spike in visitors. One of the challenges these agencies face is its proximity to Syria and conflict zones.

“We cannot say that millions visit this site each year – visitor numbers have been relatively modest,” said Nicholas Kropacek, the marketing director for the Eastern Turkey Tours travel agency. “This has been a function of the fact that the region of Turkey in which Göbekli Tepe is located shares a border with Syria. I should point out that the proximity to the border with Syria has not affected the safety of the site or of the principal city here, Şanlıurfa. The area around Şanliurfa has been safe throughout the period of unrest in Syria.”

Kropacek nevertheless underlined that his agency had witnessed a “big increase” in inquiries about the site and the region in general, and has already taken hundreds of tourists to see the ruins.

“Göbekli Tepe is now listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is a key component of the government’s strategy to promote tourism,” he noted.

“While traditional beach tourism remains the mainstay of tourism in Turkey, cultural and historical tourism is growing,” he continued.

“Göbekli Tepe is probably the most important archaeological site currently being excavated anywhere in the World. Part of its great appeal is the fact that it is an ongoing excavation and will be ongoing for many years to come. Each excavating season yields more knowledge and reveals more of this extraordinary site.”

Link to Article - Photos:

https://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,734 ... HGmpiiCL_E
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Re: How Turkey’s Local Elections Became a Vote on Erdogan

PostAuthor: Anthea » Wed Mar 27, 2019 11:10 pm

AKP woos voters in mainly Kurdish Diyarbakır

Promoting jobs, services and new construction across Turkey’s violence-scarred southeast, Turkey’s ruling party is seeking to lure voters away from the dominant pro-Kurdish party in Sunday’s local elections, Voice of America reported on Tuesday

The ruling Justice and Development Party’s (AKP) has launched a sincere campaign in Bağlar, the main district of Diyarbakır, the largest city in Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast.

"People of Bağlar want services, want peace, want jobs, and they believe that peace, the services and the jobs will only come from the hands of the AKP Party municipal officials,” said AKP Bağlar mayoral candidate Hüseyin Beyoğlu. “People of Bağlar are showing a red card to (Peoples’ Democratic Party) HDP, which for the last 20 years brought nothing but discontent to their district.”

Following the mid-2015 collapse of a peace process between the outlawed Kurdish separatist group the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and Ankara, fighting erupted in Diyarbakır, like in many towns and cities across the region.

Parts of Diyarbakır, including much of its UNESCO-listed city centre, were razed to the ground as security forces ousted PKK fighters. Tens of thousands of people remain homeless, according to VOA.

The PKK had long avoided fighting in urban areas, and its tactical change drew criticism from its usually loyal supporters, according to VOA.

“The AKP is seeking to exploit any rift and is pouring millions of dollars into rebuilding destroyed parts of the city,” said VOA. “Huge posters adorn rebuilt walls, highlighting the destruction by the fighting and the vision of a modernized restored city. The AKP in Diyarbakır believes they have a winning message of development and progress over strife.”

Critics say it is unclear who will be able to afford the new housing, with the areas destroyed in fighting among the city’s poorest, according to VOA. Still, AKP candidate Beyoğlu has been navigating local checkpoints to deliver his message to local traders for weeks.

Some businessmen have offered support. “As tradespeople, we were very unhappy,” said a cleaning materials wholesaler. “We couldn’t open our shops, always fighting, always chaos. Thank God these people lifted that wreckage; that’s why our choice is AKP.”

Abdurrahman Doğan, an AKP campaigner who is also running for local council, said there were no longer any "no-go" areas for his party in the city.

"We will rebuild Bağlar with the help of our government, build new housing complexes," he told VOA. "There are many streets here where no ambulance or fire engines can enter. They will all be knocked down and a brand new Bağlar will be rebuilt."

Despite such optimism, the AKP is facing a difficult struggle in Bağlar, a longtime stronghold of the Kurdish movement, according to VOA. In the last local election, the AKP lost by 58 percent to 32 percent.

Following the July 2016 coup attempt, the AKP government removed from office some 95 of the HDP’s 103 elected mayors representing the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) and replaced them with appointees, part of a crackdown on the HDP for its alleged ties to the PKK, an armed group at war in Turkey for over 30 years.

In recent weeks, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has vowed to again replace HDP mayors, if they win. There appears a strong sense of injustice among some in Bağlar, that its previously elected mayor is now languishing in jail, and replaced by a state appointee, said VOA.

“What I have been observing is that HDP will come out of the polls on top in Diyarbakır just like the old elections,” said an old man in a coffee shop.

https://ahvalnews.com/turkey-local-elec ... QZlfIqPZ4g
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Re: Erdogan AKP woos voters in mainly Kurdish Diyarbakır

PostAuthor: Anthea » Sat Mar 30, 2019 12:36 am

‘We are taking back what is ours’
Turkey’s Kurds

Residents of the Kurdish-majority southeastern province of Batman hope to propel their favoured party back to power this Sunday, when Turkey heads to the polls for local elections.

In 2016, every one of the province’s elected municipal leaders from the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP) was dismissed and replaced by state appointees.

The HDP, Turkey's second-largest opposition party, is seen by Ankara as the political wing of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), an armed group that has waged an insurgency in Turkey since 1984 and is labelled a terrorist group by Turkey, the United States and the European Union.

As part of the Turkish government’s crackdown on opponents following a failed coup in July 2016, 95 of 102 HDP mayors across Turkey’s southeast were dismissed and replaced by administrators appointed by the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

Islamic and Kurdish identity go hand-in-hand in Batman, an industrial city of some 600,000. The province has been hit hard by an economic crisis that has seen the lira slide and inflation soar as Turkey has fallen into recession.

At an open market in central Batman, Asiye Yılmaz is buying only the outer green leaves of a cauliflower.

“If I could afford the cauliflower itself, I’d be buying that,” she explained. “We are living day-to-day. My husband works in construction but hasn’t had a job in six months. I’m going to vote HDP as I always do. We are not terrorists, as the government seems to think. We are just normal people who are trying survive and lead a good life.

In the 2014 local elections, the HDP received 55.9 percent of the vote in Batman, followed by the ruling Islamist Justice and Development Party (AKP) at 31 percent and two other Islamist parties.

Last June, the HDP secured four lawmakers in parliament for Batman province, receiving more than 63 percent of the parliamentary vote. In the presidential race, HDP candidate Selahattin Demirtaş received just under 63 percent in Batman, even though he ran his campaign from jail, while Erdoğan received about half that, 31 percent.

On Sunday, HDP mayoral candidate Mehmet Demir faces AKP candidate Murat Güneştekin, CHP candidate Enver Erdem and Saadet Party candidate İlhami Işık. Demir’s slogan is “Batman is ours”, an apparent response to government-appointed officials taking over the province’s municipalities.

Save for a few HDP and AKP posters, there is little pre-election buzz in the town, which has chosen Kurdish politicians in every election since 1999.

Repeated accusations by Erdoğan that HDP lawmakers support terror have brought back memories of the 1990s, when state-supported paramilitaries killed hundreds of Kurds. The AKP has built its campaign on construction projects and urban planning, while the HDP has been vocal about tackling AKP corruption and ousting the state-appointed officials.

Farmer Hamdullah Gül sees Turkey suffering under the financial policies of the AKP.

“Batman has oil, but it doesn’t belong to us somehow,” he said. “There is no way we can accept the will of a people being seized by the government. I think the silence of the people shouldn’t deceive anyone. We are taking back what is ours come March 31.

Pensioner Abdulhakim İçer said people were facing severe financial strain and said no previous government had used such divisive language. He said he would support Saadet, an opposition Islamist party. “I believe they can solve this country’s problems,’’ he said.

A creek running through Batman has been a problem for decades, with heavy rainfall leading to flooding that causes damage and even death. Promises are made during every election campaign to deal with the problem, but it never happens, locals said.

Fırat Atar, who sells fruit and vegetables at the weekly street markets, said he would not be voting this year because he was tired of all the empty promises. “Just look at this creek, a problem running through our town that everyone is turning a blind eye to,’’ he said.

Nineteen-year-old Orhan Atalay is a local exception. He said the government-appointed officials had done more for Batman than anyone else.

“Nobody used to pick up our garbage,” he said. “I mean there are financial crises and unemployment in every country. I think Turkey will overcome these and I am voting for the AKP. I am sure that other parties will make more of a mess of Turkey.”

Batman has lost its energy due to government pressure, according to CHP candidate Adnan Yaşar. He said locals complain most about unemployment and the lack of democratic rights.

“We still believe we’re going to witness a serious vote increase here. We are doing our best to make our platform known. The rest is up to our people,’’ Yaşar said.

The vast majority of Batman residents though expressed support for the HDP, which appears likely to retake the province’s municipalities. But what will happen then?

Erdoğan has vowed to remove any elected official who is found to be linked to what he says is terror, just like the dozens removed from office before

https://ahvalnews.com/local-elections/w ... IC2CaVbXtk
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