Turkey: Teachers’ lives threatened in Kurdish southeast


EGITIM-SEN (Education and Science Workers of Turkey), ETUCE’s Member Organisation in Turkey is extremely concerned about the latest escalation of violence in Turkey’s Kurdish southeast. The Education ministry has apparently instructed over 3000 teachers to leave the conflict zone and around at least 164 000 pupils and students are therefore prevented from going to school for an indefinite period.

As a result of the ongoing military curfews imposed by Ankara following the clashes between the army and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in several cities of the Kurdish region, daily life and education has completely stopped.

Our demand is the implementation of mechanisms for both parties to restart the negotiation process immediately, to cease the fire and solve the problems in a peaceful and democratic manner,” stresses Sakine Esen Yılmaz EGITIMS-SEN’s General Secretary.

Sending teachers away from this area and preventing children to go to school will only benefit terror,” said Usman Behcet, EGITIM-SEN’s director in Diyarbakir where on Wednesday 6 January EGITIM-SEN member Mevlude Ketani was hit in the head by a stray bullet in her flat as she was about to put her children to safety. She is in intensive care and still is in a life-threatening state.

An EI/ETUCE delegation will meet the local EGITIM-SEN union representatives and a letter has been addressed to the Turkish authorities.

Read the letter sent by EI to Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President of the Republic of Turkey