Van Castle falls victim of the government policy aimed at destroying historical heritage

The historical Van Castle is an example of the policy pursued by the AKP-MHP government to destroy Kurdish other nations' identities.

The Turkish AKP-MHP government pursues the destruction of Kurdish and other nations’ identities also through the destruction of important historical places, which are in fact, world’s heritage sites.

The historical Van Castle is an example of this policy of destruction. It was declared a Natural Site-Qualified Natural Protection Area, has been kidnapped from the people of Van in the last few years and turned almost into a business.

Van Castle, which is 1800 meters long, 120 meters wide and 80 meters high, is built on a steep rock, 5 km from the city center on the shore of Van Lake, and in recent years has been completely surrounded by wire fences. There is only one entrance door and people have to pay to enter.

Small children who were promoting the castle in other languages to the tourists who once came to Van Castle were completely removed from the castle. The people of Van now enter the castle by jumping over the iron gates and wire fences.

Van Çev-Der President Ali Kalçık said: "In order to destroy all historical buildings in Kurdistan, these structures were ransacked as the rumor was spread that they hid treasures. The inscriptions found around Van Castle were destroyed on 12 September 1980 [during the military coup]. Van Castle has become a pile of stones. In fact, it is no longer a castle. In the last two or three years, it has been transformed into a commercial area for profit and was closed to the public. It is not a solution to create a safety barrier with wire fences.”