Conflict in Turkey hurts all minorities

The ongoing fights in Turkey reached another level. The conflict does not harm only Kurdish people, but also all other minorities, such as Alevites, Syriac Christians and others.

On January 28th Syriac Church of Virgin Mary in Sur district, Diyarbakır and the Priest Yusuf Akbulut with his family had been caught in the conflict. Priest Yusuf Akbulut and his family had been evacuated from the area and eye witnesses reported damage in some parts of the historical Syriac Church of Virgin Mary.
Since the conflict started Hundreds of Kurdish civilians, among them elderly, women and children (even babies) lost their lives. Dead corpses are forbidden to be buried. The situation is out of control and the civilians are suffering. This situation is a serious human rights abuse.
Besides the civilian toll of the conflict, also historical monuments, church, mosques, cites had been targeted and damaged. Moreover, during the conflict some Syriac-Christian villages had been under the fire, forests and vineyards had been burned by causing financial and environmental damage.

During the same conflict in the 90s, up to 60 Syriac-Christian civilians were killed in the Turabdin region, which caused another wave of migration of Syriacs from Turabdin region and villages.

Turkey has obligation to respect international law, humanitarian law and human rights criteria and protecting historical monuments in the region. The treatment of civilians in the conflict has to be a priority for Turkey and ease the ways for ameliorate their life conditions.

As European Syriac Union we call the international community and civil society organisations to negotiate an end of this conflict and engage in the constructive solutions for the end of the conflict which causing humanitarian disaster, destruction of homes, cities and residential areas and most important the possibility of living together and co-existence.

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