His Excellency Mr. John W. Ashe
UNICEF Executive Board President
3 UN Plaza, 11th Floor, New York, NY 10017
Fax: (212) 326 7096
Brussels, 1 March 2012
Open Letter to the President of UNICEF
Stop sexual abuse of Kurdish Children in Turkey
The reports in the press on 29th February about the systematic sexual abuse and rape of Kurdish children in the Children’s Prison of Pozanti near the city of Adana has alarmed and shocked us. Although the issue was brought to the agenda of the Turkish Parliament, the AKP government has not intervened. Now we learn that the brutality of Pozanti is not an exceptional phenomenon. Unfortunately we were informed that the same atrocities are happening in the Prison of Kürkçüler by city of Adana. This utterly inhumane and abusive practise inflicted on our children exceeds all the boundaries of decency, conscience and morality, and we cannot tolerate it.
Since April 14 2009 the AKP government arrested almost 8,000 Kurdish deputies, mayors, journalists, politicians, lawyers, children, elderly, all are Kurds and Turks who have spoken out for peace. Now those who were arrested are left defenceless because their lawyers are imprisoned as well. A fundamental reason for the transformation of Kurdistan into a prison is the persistent silence of the UN, EU, EC, OSCE as well as Western states, who are failing to fulfil their responsibilities to protect the people’s fundamental rights and especially their right not to suffer the abuses meted out against them under the AKP government.
This recent systematic harassment and policy of using rape against our children is the final stage in the political genocide against the Kurdish people. Despite the political genocide of the Turkish state, the Kurdish people continue their struggle for their right to self-determination according to the UN Charter. The AKP government is trying to break this resistance by attacking our society at all levels. For these reasons thousands of Kurdish children were tortured on the streets and in the prisons. Although this is contrary to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child, countless Kurdish children were detained and arrested.
Unfortunately neither the UN nor the organisation for protecting and developing children’s rights, UNİCEF have intervened with sanctions against the arrests and detentions of these thousands of Kurdish children so far and as a result of this international silence the AKP went so far as to allow the rape of Kurdish children.
For this reason we urge you to use your authority and intervene by taking appropriate action according to the framework and mechanisms of UN against the Turkish government for the violation of the UN Convention for Protecting of the Rights of the Child. Furthermore, we appeal to you to consider the possibility of creating a special committee which can visit the prisons mentioned as a matter of urgently. The families of abused and raped children are expecting your intervention by an urgent visit.
Enclosed we are sending you the information file that we have compiled about the abuse of Kurdish children.
Commission of Women of the Kurdistan National Congress