Skip to content

KHRP | Kurdish Human Rights Project

narrow screen resolution wide screen resolution Increase font size Decrease font size Default font size default color brown color green color red color blue color

Kurdish Human Rights Project: This is the legacy website of the Kurdish Human Rights Project, containing reports and news pertaining to human rights issues in the Kurdish Regions for 20 years.

You are here: 
Skip to content

Charity Awards

Charity Awards

Gruber Prize


Gruber Justice Prize

KHRP Condemns Ongoing Violence against Civilians in Turkey and Syria since Newroz Festival

KHRP condemns the indiscriminate use of violence and lethal force by both Syrian and Turkish security forces over the past ten days of Newroz-related celebrations and protests.

On 20 March several protesters were shot dead in the Syrian town of Qamishli when security forces used live ammunition on crowds celebrating the Newroz festival. Hundreds more were arbitrarily detained and KHRP has received several reports that those detained have suffered torture and ill treatment at the hands of their captors.

In the Kurdish regions of Turkey unrest has continued since the security forces’ violent suppression of Newroz celebrations, resulting in further clashes, protests and violence.  The use of extreme force on civilians by the authorities has been well-documented. Videos and photographs have been widely circulated in the media showing riot police baton charging unarmed Kurdish civilians, many of whom were elderly. Another widely-circulated video shows a Turkish police officer deliberately breaking the arm of an already-restrained 15-year-old Kurdish child in the town of Colemerg, south-eastern Turkey. According to KHRP sources, the child remains in custody despite the serious injury inflicted upon him. KHRP has also received news that one young man shot and beaten by riot police in Van over a week ago passed away yesterday.

KHRP Executive Director Kerim Yildiz today stated: “KHRP condemns the use of such extreme and indiscriminate force on unarmed civilians exercising their right to assembly. The use of such lethal force not only is a grave violation of human rights and an unacceptable abuse of state authority. Such force also serves to perpetuate conflict and hostility in the region, as does the ongoing Turkish military operations both in Turkey and across the border in Iraq. Such irresponsible violence should be utterly condemned and those responsible for abuses should be brought to justice.”