|• Mayor||Leyla Imret (BDP)|
|• District||1,863.61 km2 (719.54 sq mi)|
|Elevation||1,650 m (5,410 ft)|
|• District density||47/km2 (120/sq mi)|
Şırnak (Kurdish: Şirnex) is a Turkish town in southeastern Turkey. It is the capital of Şırnak Province, a new province that split from the Hakkari province. The Habur border gate with Iraq which is one of Turkey's main links to Middle Eastern countries is also on Şırnak.
It is believed that the settlement was originally called "Sehr-i Nuh" (the city of Noah) since it was near Cudi Mountain where Noah's Ark finally landed after the Flood. The original name later transformed into "Sernah".
During the Guti Empire's reign in the region, a special inscription style called "civi zend" was invented. Mount Cudi, surrounded by other mountains to the east and northeast and plains to the west and southwest has a unique place in history. It is the mountain on which Noah's Ark is believed to have landed. One of its peaks, at over 2000 meters, is "Noah's Visit" (some Islamic scholars argue that Noah landed on Cudi mountain).
Other historical assets of Şırnak include a rock carving from the Assyrians describing a figure on horseback (in Meseici village near Kasrik Pass); other rock carvings dating back to the Neolithic Age which corresponds to 7000 BC (in Beytüşşebap); fortresses of Kale, Meme Kale and Kaletivuru; bridges of the Kasrik Pass which reflect the art stone working in the time of Seljuks; and Virgin Mary Church in Cizre (not to be confused with the one in Ephesus).
1992 Turkish military operation
On 18 August 1992, fighting broke out between between Turkish security forces and Kurdish separatists of the PKK. 20,000 out of 25,000 residents fled the city during the three days of fighting.
While the town was under bombardment, there was no way to get an account of what was happening in the region as journalists were prevented from entering the city centre which was completely burned down by the security forces. Şırnak was under fire for three days and tanks and cannons were used to hit buildings occupied by civilians.
On 26 August 1992, Amnesty International sent requests to then Prime Minister, Süleyman Demirel, Interior Minister Ismet Sezgin, Emergency Legislation Governor Ünal Erkan and Şırnak province governor Mustafa Mala, to immediately initiate an independent and impartial inquiry into the events, to ensure no-one was mistreated in police custody and to make their findings public.
Demographics and Geography
The population of Şırnak province is 430,424 (2009 census) living in an area extending over 7,172 square kilometers. Beytüşşebap, Cizre, Guclukonak, Idil, Silopi and Uludere are the administrative districts of Şırnak. The population of the Şırnak city is 63,664. The total fertility rate is one of the highest in Turkey at 3.21 children per woman.
Şırnak has a continental climate with cold, snowy winters and very hot, long and dry summers. Humidity is always low throughout the year due to its inland positioning, which makes the hot summer heat more bearable. The average temperature in August is 28 °C (82.4 °F) whilst the average temperature in January is 2 °C (35.6 °F). February and March are the wettest months, July and August being the driest, with literally no precipitation at all.
|Climate data for Şırnak|
|Average high °C (°F)||6.0
|Daily mean °C (°F)||1.8
|Average low °C (°F)||−1.5
|Average precipitation mm (inches)||79.9
|Average rainy days||9.4||10.1||11.8||11.3||7.5||2.8||1.5||1.4||2.1||5.9||7.9||9.4||81.1|
|Source: Devlet Meteoroloji İşleri Genel Müdürlüğü |
The mayor of Şırnak, Ramazan Uysal, was arrested in October 2011, as part of the KCK investigation, and, as of 12 October 2011, remains in detention.
On 15 October 2011 it was announced that the Ministry of the Interior had suspended him from his functions. 
In Şırnak, agriculture, animal husbandry and border trade form the backbone of economic life. Wheat, barley and lentil are the main crops. Cotton is grown as an industrial crop. Cizre and Silopi raise high quality pomegranate and grape. Animal husbandry is practiced by nomadic people. They mainly breed sheep and various types of goats (ordinary goat, Angora goat, and brown haired goat specific to the area). Traditional handicrafts consist of carpet, kilim and bag weaving. Şırnak scarves are woven out of sheep and goat wool. Beytüşşebap is well known for its kilims. Nevertheless, Sirnak province is the poorest province of Turkey in terms of per capita income. Its per capita income comes around to around 700 USD, which is similar to that of many sub-Saharan African countries. But in the future, Şırnak has the potential to flourish from meat processing,leather industries and asphalt mining, which has an estimated reserve of 29 million tons.
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