2014 Kurdish riots in Turkey

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2014 Kurdish protests in Turkey refer to large-scale protests by Kurds in Turkey in autumn 2014, as a spillover of the crisis in Kobanî. Large pro-Kobanî demonstrations unfolded in Turkey, and quickly descended into violence between protesters and the Turkish police. Several military incidents between Turkish forces and PKK militants in south-eastern Turkey, resulting in several mortal casualties, contributed to the escalation. Protests then spread to various cities in Turkey. Protesters were met with tear gas and water cannons, and initially 12 people were killed. A total of 31 people were killed in subsequent protesting up to 14 October.[1]

Causes[edit]

As a result of the ISIL advance on Kobanî that began 13 September 2014, more than 200,000 Syrian refugees flowed into Turkey.[2] However, Turkish security forces did not allow People's Protection Units (YPG) militants and other volunteers to go the other way, using tear gas and water cannons against to prevent them.[3] On 30 September, errant shells landed on Turkish soil and the Turks shot back into Syrian territory, with Turkish armor being brought to the border to deter further incursions.[4] Five civilians in Turkey were injured when a mortar hit their house. Turkey evacuated two villages as a precautionary measure.[5] While dispersing Kurdish crowds near the border, Turkish police fired tear gas directly into a BBC news crew van, breaking through the rear window and starting a small fire.[6]

Events[edit]

As a result of crisis in Kobanî, massive pro-Kobanî demonstrations unfolded in Turkey and quickly turned into violence between protesters and the Turkish police. Several military incidents between Turkish forces and PKK militants in south-eastern Turkey, resulting in several mortal casualties, contributed to the escalation. Protests then spread to various cities in Turkey. Protesters were met with tear gas and water cannons, and initially 12 people were killed. A total of 31 people were subsequent rioting up to 14 October.[1]

On 1 November 2014, multiple protests took place to support the Kurds of Kobanî. 5,000 people demonstrated in the Turkish town of Suruç, 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) from the border. At least 15,000 marched in Turkey's largest Kurdish-majority city of Diyarbakır and 1,000 protested in Istanbul, all peaceful.[7]

On 7 November, there were reports that a 28-year-old Kurdish woman activist had been shot in the head by Turkish soldiers on the Turkish side of the border near Kobanî. She was reportedly part of a peaceful group of demonstrators who wanted the Turkish government to allow volunteers from Turkey to join the fight against ISIL in Kobanî.[8]

Response[edit]

 Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said that he was not ready to launch operations against ISIL in Syria unless it was also against the Syrian government.[9]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b "Kobane: Air strikes help Syria town curb IS". bbc.com/news. Retrieved 8 October 2014. 
  2. ^ "1,500 Kurdish Fighters Join Forces Against IS in Syria". The New Indian Express. Retrieved 3 October 2014. 
  3. ^ "Protest erupts in Turkish Syrian borderline". Cihan News Agency. Retrieved 3 October 2014. 
  4. ^ "TANKS ON BORDER AS PARLIAMENT READIES TO DISCUSS TROOP MANDATE". dailysabah.com. Retrieved 3 October 2014. 
  5. ^ "Kurds battle IS for key Syria town as fire spills over border". Yahoo News. 5 October 2014. Retrieved 7 October 2014. 
  6. ^ "Turkish police tear-gas BBC team near Syrian border". BBC News. Retrieved 7 October 2014. 
  7. ^ "Thousands protest in Turkey to show solidarity with Kobane Kurds". Middle East Eye. Retrieved 3 November 2014. 
  8. ^ "Kurdish Woman Activist 'Shot in the Head' by Turkish Soldiers near Kobani". International Business Times. Retrieved 7 November 2014. 
  9. ^ "U.S. frustration rises as Turkey withholds military help from besieged Kobani". Washington Post. 9 October 2014. Retrieved 11 October 2014.