HDP MP Faysal Sarıyıldız spoke in the UN and said: “Because there was silence for the crimes against humanity in Cizre, Erdoğan continues his massacres today in Afrin. Action must be taken.”
The United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council’s 37th Human Rights Sessions continue in the UN Geneva offices. In parallel with the sessions today a panel discussion on human rights in Turkey was held by IFOR. IFOR Representative Derek Brett moderated the panel discussion where close witness of the Cizre massacre HDP Şırnak MP Faysal Sarıyıldız, lawyer Hülya Uçpınar and human rights defender and conscientious objector Halil Savda participated.
SARIYILDIZ: “UN’S SILENCE IS UNACCEPTABLE”
Sarıyıdız spoke about the massacre in Cizre with a slideshow. “The Turkish state committed war crimes and crimes against humanity in Cizre for 79 days. UN High Commissioner of Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Husein called the events of those days ‘shocking’. The incidents in Cizre were later defined in UN reports as ‘apocalyptic scenes’. What they called apocalyptic were actually war crimes crimes against humanity, but they avoided openly stating that,” said Sarıyıldız and stated that it was unacceptable that the UN still doesn’t pursue the Cizre incidents.
“THEY CONTINUE TO COMMIT WAR CRIMES BECAUSE OF THE SILENCE”
Sarıyıldız stated that the continued silence against Erdoğan and his government today despite the Turkish state committing war crimes and crimes against humanity in Cizre in front of the whole world to see goes against the raison d’etre of the UN, and added: “Because there was silence in those days, Erdoğan continues to commit the same war crimes and crimes against humanity today in Afrin.”
“ACTION MUST BE TAKEN”
Sarıyıldız said the Turkish state continues to do in Afrin today the same thing they did in Cizre and protested the inaction against the Turkish state and Erdoğan.
Sarıyıldz also stated that Turkey continues with the invasion attacks despite the UN Security Council resolution for a month-long ceasefire, and called on the UN to take action at this point.
SAVDA: “THE GOVERNMENT LEAVES NO SPACE TO LIVE FOR THE OPPOSITION”
Halil Savda spoke after Sarıyıldız and started his speech by pointing out that justice as an institution is not functional in Turkey. Savda said in Turkey today, anybody who is against the government is being targeted and added: “The people who criticize the government’s policies no longer have any space to survive. The government is forcing everybody to think like them.” Savda also mentioned the hardships conscientious objectors face in Turkey and stated that the militaristic structure of the state makes living as a conscientious objector impossible within the establishment.
LAWYER UÇPINAR: “REJECTING WAR COSTS PEOPLE THEIR LIVES”
Lawyer Hülya Uçpınar spoke about the hardships conscientious objectors experience in Turkey as well and said: “In Turkey if you are against wars and if you chose to be a conscientious objector, things reach such a level that it costs you your life.” Uçpınar stated that many conscientious objectors face extreme penalties for their objection.