Campaign for the Preservation of Kirmanckî

In order to promote the preservation and further development of Kirmanckî, civil society organizations from Northern Kurdistan have launched a campaign for International Mother Language Day: #ZoneMuwaXoQeseyke

Around 7,000 languages are spoken worldwide. According to UNESCO, around half of them are threatened with extinction - including Kirmanckî. This variety of Kurdish, also called Zazakî, Dimilkî, or Kirdkî, is anchored as the main dialect primarily in Dersim and the provinces of Erzincan, Bingöl, and MUş. Although some linguists do not consider Kirmanckî to be a Kurdish dialect but a language in its own right, its speakers largely identify themselves as Kurds. According to estimates, however, this variety is spoken today by only about two million people. This is due to the Turkish state's particularly pronounced pressure to assimilate in regions with an Alevi Kurdish majority and genocides, such as in Dersim in 1937/38.

In order to promote the preservation and further development of Kirmanckî, thirteen civil society organizations have now launched a campaign on International Mother Language Day on February 21. The initiative, which is supported by the Congress for the Reconstruction of Dersim, among others, will start next Sunday at 6 p.m. (CET) with an action in online networks under the hashtag #ZoneMuwaXoQeseyke. Participants are called upon to take part in the campaign in a creative and versatile way.

The calling organizations have developed a multi-layered concept for Kirmanckî promotion and announced a language forum to be implemented in the near future. The activities surrounding the campaign are under the slogan "Let's learn our mother tongue before the last Kirmanckî first speaker dies." The campaign is supported by: Congress for the Reconstruction of Dersim, Center of Dersim Studies (DAM), Democratic Alevi Associations, Democratic Alevi Federation, Platform of Local Democratic Associations, Dersim Association against Genocide, Malatya-Kürecik Initiative, Kormeç Association, Koçgiri People's Association, Federation of Democratic Alevi Maraş Associations (MARDEF), Platform of Kurds from Central Anatolia (PKAN), Karakoçan Initiative, Xinis Association.