After more than a month of round-the-clock curfews, the governor of Şırnak province has partially lifted the curfew in Silopi. Round-the-clock indefinite curfews continue in the town of Cizre (also in Şırnak province) and Sur district, in the city of Diyarbakır.
Amnesty International makes clear in an updated an updated Urgent Action today, that, both in Silopi and in other areas subject to government operations, the situation is dire.
On 18 January, the governor of Şırnak province announced the lifting of the curfew between 5am and 6pm daily. Media footage of the town, taken since the partial lifting of the curfew, shows extensive damage to homes and other buildings, rendering them unusable. Speaking to Amnesty International, a lawyer based in Silopi said that extensive damage to infrastructure means electricity and water supplies are not fully restored. Water is being brought to neighbourhoods in tankers, not fully meeting the needs of the residents. Electricity main supply points have been severely damaged and as a result, supply is intermittent.
The lawyer told Amnesty International that food supplies also continue to be scarce. The majority of shops in the main street in Silopi have been severely damaged, and there are major delays on the roads into the town as curfews and security operations continue in the nearby town of Cizre.
A video on BBC’s Turkish service makes clear the shocking scale of the damage in Silopi and elsewhere.
— BBC Türkçe (@bbcturkce) January 21, 2016
Amnesty has called on its world-wide membership to contact Turkish authorities:
Please write immediately in Turkish or your own language:
* Calling on the Turkish authorities to refrain from imposing arbitrary restrictions on freedom of movement and to ensure residents of Cizre in Şırnak province and Sur district in Diyarbakır have sufficient time each day to leave their homes or are provided with other safe means to access all necessary supplies, medical care, water and electricity, and are able to leave affected areas if they so wish;
* Calling on them to restore electricity and water supplies in Silopi and ensure that adequate food supplies reach the residents as a matter of urgency;
*Urging them not to use firearms except in the event of imminent threat of death or serious injury and to ensure prompt, independent and impartial investigations into deaths and injuries that have occurred in curfew areas;
* Calling on them to ensure the right to freedom of peaceful assembly is fully respected for citizens wishing to show their solidarity with those living under curfew.