IHD: What happened in Dersim is a genocide

Noting that what happened in Dersim was a genocide, the IHD stated that a 'Truth Commission for Dersim' should be established.

On the anniversary of the Dersim Genocide, the Human Rights Association (IHD) Headquarters issued a written statement.

The statement noted that military operations against Dersim began with a decision of the Council of Ministers dated May 4, 1937, within the framework of the "Tunceli Law" numbered 2884 and dated December 25, 1935, and that "tens of thousands of Kurds/Alevis were massacred during these operations. Military actions lasted until 1938, and the topography of Dersim was substantially depopulated by forced displacement as a result of the mass slaughter.”


Remarking that as human rights defenders, they describe the massacres in Dersim in 1937-38 as “genocide” as defined in Article 76 of the TCK, the İHD stated the following:

"The residents of Dersim continue to refer to what happened as genocide. While the IHD describes what happened in Dersim in 1937-1938 as genocide, it contends that facing the past in terms of human rights law is necessary and can only be addressed within this framework. It is possible to confront the past. We noted in our November 25, 2011 statement that we believe it is an important beginning that Prime Minister Erdogan used the term "massacre" to describe what happened in Dersim in 2011 at the AKP Provincial Chairs meeting and apologized on behalf of the state.

To face Dersim, the state must first form a 'Truth for Dersim Commission' within the parliament. Following the completion of the commission's work, it is important to create the necessary legal arrangements in accordance with the commission's recommendations, with a focus on the acknowledgement of genocide, apologies, and restorative justice remedies. Furthermore, without waiting for these steps, we demand the restoration of the name of Dersim, restoration of the dignity of Seyit Rıza and his companions who were executed in the Dersim genocide, revelation of their burial places, duly opening of the other mass graves, revelation of the fate of the girls who were not killed but were captured alive as a result of military operations, their reunion with their families, cancellation of the HEPP and other dams that are still under construction, ending of the natural and cultural destruction, preservation of the natural and cultural centers in Dersim and their handover to the local representatives of the Dersim people.”