World Bulletin / News Desk
The kidnapping of main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) deputy Hüseyin Aygün in the eastern province of Tunceli by the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) on Sunday has highlighted the situation of dozens of soldiers, policemen and public officials who have been kidnapped by the PKK and are still in the hands of the militant organization.
These kidnapping incidents have not received much attention in Turkey, both from politicians and from the media, leading to increased concerns about the safety of those held.
The PKK kidnapped two soldiers and a health official in a rural area in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır last July. It released the health official in September but noncommissioned officer Abdullah Söpçeler and Spc. Sgt. Zihni Koçun are still in the hands of the PKK.
The PKK also kidnapped a candidate for district governor, identified as Kenan Erenoğlu, a medic and three civilians in August 2011. Four village guards in the southeastern province of Şırnak were also kidnapped by the PKK last September.
A policeman, Nadir Özgen, was also kidnapped in the Çatak district of Van province by three members of the PKK last September.
In March of this year, the PKK kidnapped three young women and two men from the Şemdinli district of Hakkari province, all of whom are related to the president of Iraqi Kurdistan, Massoud Barzani.
The militant organization kidnapped two teachers and a soldier in the eastern province of Bitlis in June.
PKK militants also kidnapped Justice and Development Party (AK Party) official Hayrullah Tanış in Van in July.
Most recently, the PKK kidnapped three soldiers on leave who were on their way home in Diyarbakır in early August.
There were calls on the Twitter on Monday for more media coverage of the plight of those individuals being held by the PKK.