World Bulletin / News Desk
Newly appointed Police Chief of Diyarbakır Recep Güven has said everyone shares some responsibility for youths taking up arms and joining the militant Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), noting that the problem in the country's Southeast will not be resolved unless tears are also shed for PKK militants killed in clashes with security forces.
Güven's taboo-breaking statements came during a meeting with journalists in a coffee house in Diyarbakır on Sunday.
He said the region where Diyarbakır is located has produced many valuable people in the past, with its beautiful geographical and historical texture, but that the region is today raising “monsters” due to a lack of supervision and control.
“It is because of our failure to reach out to people, to provide human-based services, not because of any other reason. If one youth is going up to the mountains [to join the PKK], we all have responsibility for this. How can we not self-criticize?” he said.
Güven, who spent five years in Diyarbakır as an intelligence officer in the 1990s, has recently returned to the province as its police chief from the eastern province of Siirt.
He said he had read hundreds of reports about the lives of young people who join the PKK and discovered that these individuals join the terrorist group due to the poor circumstances of their lives.
“These children wrote, ‘I want to contribute to our war of national independence.' This is their final sentence. When I ask one of them how old he is he says, ‘12.' His father is jobless and beats his mother. The social environment is terrible. He cannot perpetuate this life. He says, ‘I will fight.' He is fleeing from the circumstances he is in. If one of the reasons for this escape is me, the other reason is you. This means there is certainly a problem in this society. If we don't mention this, how will we be able to solve it?” asked Güven.
Turkey has lost around 40,000 people in its fight against the PKK since the militant organization took up arms in 1984. The PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the EU and the United States, has stepped up its violence over the past years, killing hundreds of civilians and members of the security forces. Many link the PKK's emergence with the harsh policies implemented by the state against Turkish Kurds in the past decades. Turkey has recently begun taking significant steps to allow Turkish Kurds to enjoy broader political and cultural rights.
Güven also said the state exists to serve its people, and he believes that a person's life has priority over the state.
“You let the people live so that the state can live,” Güven added.
Volkan Bozkir is closely watching developments in Greece since it directly effects Turkey as well
A top aide of Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that the increased border security is a preventative measure.
Ismet Yilmaz, Deniz Baykal, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu and Dengir Mir Mehmet Firat are the four candidates contesting for the post
A temporary accommodation center has been established in the Suruc district of Turkey's southeastern Sanliurfa province that can host up to 35,000 people
Turkey's Foreign Ministry 'deeply concerned' over reports China banned Ramadan for Party members, including civil servants, students, teachers
Turkish dailies on Tuesday reported on the National Security Council regarding 'possible threats' on Syrian border
Turkish newspapers on Monday focus on the country’s National Security Council meeting regarding the conflict in Syria
Int'l group looking at ways it can help Turkey's 'solution process' hopes to learn from Philippines peace process
'We wish God’s mercy on those who lost their lives,' Turkish Prime Ministry says
Turkey has sent nearly 2,000 vehicles full of humanitarian aid to Kobani since September 19, 2014
Turkey already had 10km of walls with its border but will be constructing more to crack down on illegal border crossings.
The Eastern Anatolian 6.5 km-long Mount Kop tunnel is being built between the eastern provinces of Bayburt and Erzurum
Turkey has summoned the highest ranking Israeli diplomat in Ankara to demand answers as to why a group of journalists were detained and then deported
Istanbul, Turkey’s largest province, has been unanimously elected the Islamic World Youth Capital by the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) member states.
Turkish leaders dismiss speculation that ISIL entered border town from Turkey