Two people die in clashes between police and demonstrators in Hakkari

Two people die in clashes between police and demonstrators in Hakkari

HAKKARİ – Doğan News Agency
Two people die in clashes between police and demonstrators in Hakkari

The Hakkari Governor's Office said the police intervention was prompted by attacks from 25-30 people wearing masks. Tension rose when two demonstrators died after sustaining severe injuries during the police intervention was confirmed. AA photo

Two demonstrators died Dec. 6 in the southeastern province of Hakkari’s Yüksekova district following a police intervention against a protest in the town center.

Protests erupted after a local NGO made a press statement claiming that graves belonging to members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) were vandalized.

Veysel İşbilir (34) and his nephew Mehmet Reşit İşbilir (32), who both sustained severe injuries during the police intervention, died after being taken to the hospital, Doğan News Agency reported.

Hakkari’s Governor’s Office confirmed the deaths, adding that an investigation was launched into the incident. Police claimed that both men opened fire on security officers, revealing footage allegedly showing them holding weapons in their hands.

Following the NGO’s denouncement, a group of 150-160 people gathered in a spontaneous protest, the governor’s office statement said.

“Among the group, 25-30 people wearing masks attacked the riot police with handmade explosives and fireworks, prompting the police to resort to water cannons and tear gas,” the statement said.

It also said unidentified people opened fire on the water cannon trucks (TOMA) using “8-9 long barreled weapons.”  

The governor’s office also denied that any cemetery near Yüksekova had been vandalized. 

Tension rises in front of hospital

Relatives of the two demonstrators who died in the events gathered in front of the hospital, where police had taken tight security measures. Fresh scuffles broke out after the police refused demands from the relatives to leave the surroundings of the hospital. 

The police used tear gas to disperse the crowd. Some hospital windows were broken by stones thrown at the police and some patients were affected by the tear gas, the Doğan News Agency’s report said.

Shopkeepers shut down their shop’s shutters after the incidents.