DTK says HPP projects target Kurdish historical memory
In the massacre of the Zilan Valley on 13 July 1930, 15,000 people were killed according to official sources and 50,000 according to unofficial sources.
The Democratic Society Congress (DTK) issued a statement regarding the hydroelectric power plant (HPP) project which will affect Zilan Stream.
In the written statement the DTK said: "Zilan Stream represents a huge ecosystem where many creatures live in the forest area. Besides, it is an important source of livelihood for the people of the region, with its grassland areas and pastures. Therefore the project will affect the area badly also in terms of agriculture and animal husbandry."
In the statement, it was emphasized that Zilan Stream has a historical meaning for the Kurdish people as it was the place of a massacre in the 1930s.
In the massacre of the Zilan Valley on 13 July 1930, 15,000 people were killed according to official sources and 50,000 according to unofficial sources. After the massacre, 45 villages were burned down and destroyed. The state forcibly took the land from the villagers in the region of Zilan, thousands of people were exiled.
The DTK underlined that the construction of the HPP also reveals the will to destroy the memory of the Kurdistan territory. "Today, ecological massacres follow the social massacres carried out before, and aim to leave the lands of Kurdistan without people."
The DTK called on the Kurdish people, political parties, civil society organizations, women's and ecology movements to stand up against the attacks on nature and collective memory.
The Hydroelectric Power Plant (HPP), which was launched in 2014 in the region of Zilan (Geliyê Zilan) in Erçis district of Van, was stopped by a Council of State decision in 2015 upon the objection of the villagers.
Despite this, taking advantage of the period of coronavirus pandemic, construction work has been restarted while all attention was elsewhere. Hundreds of workers are working day and night to speed up works.