UK activists’ report on the struggle for autonomy in Silvan

Kurdistan Solidarity Network

Children outside a ruined house in Farqîn. Picture taken by a friend in Farqîn.Children outside a ruined house in Farqîn. Picture taken by a friend in Farqîn.

“Autonomy means that
we will live in our own way, with our own rules,our own culture and our own identity. I support this from my heart.”
– Narin, resident of Farqîn

In August 2015, the city of Farqîn (Silvan in Turkish) declared autonomy from the state. Barricades were erected on the streets of three neighbourhoods of the city – Mescit, Tekel and Konak – defended by armed people’s protection teams. The Turkish state responded by using intense violence and  imposing a series of curfews, culminating in a 12 day siege of the neighbourhoods in November. An official from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) threatened that “the security forces will erase the three Silvan neighbourhoods from the map”.

On the 20th and 21st November 2015, we travelled to Farqîn in solidarity with…

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