The number of “Special Security Zones” — a new name for the infamous Emergency Rule Regions (OHAL) of the 1990s — in Turkey’s east and southeast is now over 100, media outlets reported on Wednesday. report Zaman
According to the Habertürk daily, the security forces have declared 21 areas in the Silvan, Lice and Kulp districts of Diyarbakır province as Special Security Zones until Sept. 5, while the Ağrı and Tendürek areas were declared as such for the period Aug. 2-17.
Other areas declared Special Security Zones in east and southeast Turkey are the Şenkaya district of Erzurum province; the Nusaybin, Kızıltepe and Mazıdağı districts of Mardin province; the Yüksekova district of Hakkari province; areas between the Köprübaşı border gate and Karkamış district in Gaziantep province; areas between the Yağmuralan-Tatlıca highway, the Öncül-Arıcandere highway and the Esentepe military outpost-Ziyaret military outpost highway in Şanlıurfa province; the Ovacık, Nazımiye, Çemişgezek, Hozat and Mazgirt districts of Tunceli province; the Uludere and Cizre districts of Şırnak province; and the Pervari and Eruh districts of Siirt province.
Meanwhile, five areas in Şırnak have been declared temporary “Military Security Zones” for six months by a Cabinet decision. Law No. 2565 on Military Forbidden Zones and Security Zones provides for the establishment of two types of security zones — Military Security Zones and Special Security Zones.
After a suicide bombing in Suruç in Şanlıurfa province killed 33 activists and injured 100 more on July 20, clashes involving the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) have grown in number. Two police officers were killed by PKK members on July 22 in retaliation for Turkish authorities’ perceived failure to prevent the Suruç attack. The violence and PKK-led attacks further escalated when Turkey carried out air strikes on PKK bases in neighboring Iraq. More than 45 Turkish security personnel have been killed in PKK attacks or clashes with the terrorist organization.
The OHAL period lasted for 15 years in southeast Turkey during the 1980s and 1990s, when the Turkish security forces implemented tough security measures to fight against the PKK in the region. The period was also marked by human rights violations of the Kurdish population in the area, leading to the period being considered a dark era of recent Turkish history. Thousands of individuals were abducted or fell victim to unsolved murders for political reasons.