Mahmut Alinak speaks for the tumultuous '90s and Tanrikulu case
by Esra Ciftci
Mahmut Alinak, a DEP (Democracy Party) MP and witness of the tumultuous '90s, has provided an intimate perspective on the alleged state-perpetrated crimes in Turkey's Kurdish cities. Ex MP's statements to Arti Gercek corroborate the claims of CHP (Republican People's Party) Diyarbakır MP Sezgin Tanrikulu and add depth to the ongoing debate on human rights violations during that era.
CHP Diyarbakır MP Sezgin Tanrikulu's comments on the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) verdicts regarding forced disappearances and the killings of villagers in the 1990s have led to a formal investigation. Tanrikulu cited two cases where the ECHR convicted Turkey. "These aren't my judgments; these are ECHR decisions," emphasized the MP.
In the first case, the ECHR decision highlighted the mysterious disappearance of 11 villagers in Diyarbakir's Kulp district in October 1993. Despite state denials of involvement, eyewitnesses claim the villagers were taken away by helicopter. In the second case, the court addressed the aerial bombing of the villages of Kuskonar and Kocagilli in Sirnak, resulting in the death of 33 villagers.
Alinak corroborated the claims, stating that such incidents were well-documented and occurred in multiple locations. In an interview with Arti Gercek, Alinak reflected on the tumultuous '90s in the Kurdish region and the aftermath of Tanrikulu's revelations.
When asked about his reaction to the investigation against Tanrikulu, Alinak said, "I am not surprised, as we are no strangers to these lynchings. They aim to intimidate, ensuring no voice rises against the 'holy state'."
Recalling a tragic episode in Kulp, where 15 villagers were allegedly thrown out of a helicopter, Alinak said it was a well-documented fact. He recounted incidents from the '90s, lamenting the state's violent tactics and relentless pursuit to maintain its power dynamics.
In a riveting tale, Alinak recalled an assassination attempt on Mehmet Menge in Batman, allegedly orchestrated by state forces. Despite presenting evidence to then Prime Minister Demirel, the perpetrators faced no consequences.
Alinak's novel, 'Şiro'nun Ateşi', also highlights the state's atrocities. Based on the real-life burning of the Bana village of Basa (Guclukonak) in February 1993, the novel was banned shortly after its publication, highlighting state censorship. However, the ECHR lifted the ban 15 years later. The novel's poignant narrative underlines the villagers' relentless spirit against state oppression.