Another racist attack against Kurds in Ankara

Another racist incident against people of Kurdish origin has occurred in Ankara. A single mother of five children was insulted and threatened in the presence of Turkish police officers. As a result, they had to leave their neighborhood.

Racist violence against Kurds in Turkey is increasingly threatening proportions. Anti-Kurdish incidents of racism and discrimination occur almost daily, but perpetrators seem to enjoy complete impunity. The most recent case occurred again in Ankara. Z.D., a 38-year-old Kurdish woman living in the Elmadağ district, was racially insulted, threatened and almost attacked by Turkish neighbors in the presence of the police. However, there were only immediate consequences for the victims. They had to give up their apartment and leave the neighborhood.

Victims of discrimination forced to move

The incident was first reported by the Mezopotamya news agency (MA). According to the report, Z.D., a native of Gever (tr. Yüksekova) in the Kurdish province of Hakkari, said that she had been subjected to racist discrimination by the neighborhoods over a period of several weeks in her Ismetpaşa neighborhood. The single mother of five children, who works as a cleaning worker, lived in Ismetpaşa for the last two years. Recently, the threatening situation there has worsened for her. Signatures were collected even for the family to leave the area. Two days ago, the situation escalated.

"We don't want you here, get out"

"It was around 10:30 p.m. when the neighbors started shouting at us 'you dirty Kurds,' 'terrorists,' and sexist statements. They said they didn't want us here and we should leave. We then called the police. When the officers arrived, they tried to attack us. The police officers pushed the group back, but one of the attackers still got to the door of my apartment and tried to attack me. My oldest son panicked and picked up a knife, whereupon he was threatened by the police. He had armed himself against the officers. 'Basically, we are allowed to kill you now,' they said," MA quoted the concerned woman as saying. In the meantime, the family of six has moved.

Deadly lynch mobs

In Turkey, racist attacks on Kurds by organized lynch mobs are on the rise. In recent days, seven agricultural workers have been injured in Afyon. In Ankara, four people were injured, two of them seriously, in an armed attack on a Kurdish family. Police later attacked the family outside the hospital as well. In Konya, a 43-year-old father was killed in an attack on his family. Forty of the approximately sixty people involved were temporarily detained and all but one were released. Also in Konya, a Kurdish family of seven had earlier been attacked in their home by a lynch mob and beaten nearly to death.

Racism is not a crime in Turkey

The Turkish judiciary ignores the racist background of the attacks on Kurds. The lynch mobs are treated by law enforcement as bodily harm due to personal conflicts. It is true that racism does not appear in the Turkish penal code anyway; Article 122 only criminalizes discrimination. But even this paragraph is not applied in the recent cases of violence.