The district governor ban's on a theater play in Kurdish-language should be interpreted as a punishment against the Kurds for having voted for the opposition in Istanbul’s mayoral elections. Yet it is not only a punishment, for when the government throws a stone, it wants to hit more than one bird.
A 20-year-old Turkish soldier of Kurdish origin has been attacked by two other soldiers after he voiced his opinion that there should more Kurdish language in Turkey. Doğan Çetin said that his commander had called him a "terrorist and a backstabber." The military released a statement saying that the necessary legal procedures would be pursued with regards to the attack.
Road signs displaying the Kurdish names for local neighborhoods in southeastern Van's Çaldıran district were taken down by the trustee mayor appointed by Ankara. Turkey's Interior Ministry has replaced more than 45 mayors from the HDP in southeast Turkey since the 2019 local elections.
A Kurdish woman from Turkey's Diyarbakır has recorded a video asking Ankara and Athnes for help locating her husband and son, whom she hasn't heard from since a migrant boat crashed with all of them onboard on Aug. 25 near a small Greek island. Berivan Cansun said that she doesn't even know if her husband and son are alive.
Two out of Turkey's top three cell phone carriers don't offer services in Kurdish despite having millions of users who only speak Kurdish dialects. Turkcell offers Kurdish, Arabic, Turkish and English, while Türk Telekom and Vodafone exclude Kurdish.
A woman was denied services by Turkish telecommunications giant Türk Telekom because she only spoke Kurdish. The company did not allow her to repeat sentences in Turkish on the phone, and wouldn't provide translation. The company eventually reached the woman when her son revealed the incident on social media.
Microsoft Translation has added two Kurdish dialects to its list of text translation languages, it said on its website. Users will also be able to use Azure Cognitive Services Translator in their own applications, websites, and tools to add Northern and Central Kurdish text translation to or from more than 70 languages.
Dicle University in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır has denied changing the medium of instruction from Kurdish to Turkish at its Kurdish language department. The university said in a statement on Aug. 3 that the medium of instruction had been always Turkish for the Kurdish studies programs.
Students enrolled in the Kurdish language departments of universities in Turkey will no longer be allowed to submit their dissertations in Kurdish. Former academic Selim Temo has also announced that from now on, all lectures at these departments will be conducted only in Turkish.
The ECHR has fined Turkey for detaining a university student who participated at a protest urging the government to recognize the Kurdish language as a "mother tongue" and allow for bilingual public education. The court said that Turkey violated the student's right to liberty and security as well as the freedom of assembly and association.
Müzeyyen Yüce reports: Pro-Kurdish HDP demands a parliamentary inquiry regarding lost Kurdish-language documents that disappeared following the establishment of the Turkish Republic. HDP deputy Murat Sarısaç called on parliament to completely open the archives so that Kurdish manuscripts could be properly sorted through and catalogued.
Ahmet Türk, the sacked mayor of the southeastern province of Mardin from pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), sang a Kurdish folk song on an online broadcast, along with main opposition deputy Orhan Sarıbal. Sarıbal said that as long as folk songs live on, so does heritage, and that will eventually lead to the victory of minorities' struggles.
Opposition deputy Tuma Çelik urged the Turkish government to open schools that teach in Assyrian. The Treaty of Lausanne mandates the government to provide education opportunities in minorities' native languages in areas where their population is dense, he noted.
A center for Kurdish language and culture research, the Kurdish Institute of Istanbul, received some 1,048 applications within 24 hours of announcing that they would be opening up new spots for their online classes in the Kurmancî and Kurmanckî dialects of Kurdish. The institute will open 27 new classes of about 40 students for the online courses that will start April 15.
Ayhan Sefer Üstün from the newly-founded Future Party likened the coronavirus process in Turkey to the aftermath of the July 15, 2016 failed coup attempt in terms of the government's authoritarian tendencies. "The society is being tried to enter a new authoritarian environment via making coronavirus an excuse," Üstün, a former deputy of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), told Duvar on April 7.