Families in Turkey whose children have been abducted or forcibly recruited by the PKK terror group continued their sit-in on Monday in the southeastern Diyarbakir province.
The families have been protesting since Sept. 3, 2019 encouraging their children to give up their weapons and surrender to authorities.
Protests outside the office of the opposition Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) started with three mothers who said their children had been forcibly recruited by the terrorists. The Turkish government says the HDP has links to the PKK terror group.
The number of families taking part has since swelled to over 220.
Fatma Akkus, one of the protesting mothers, said she was there for her daughter, Songul Akkus, who was abducted by the PKK when she was just 15. For the past seven years, the mother has neither seen nor heard from the daughter.
“HDP took all the children of protesting families to the mountains. I will not leave without taking back my child. What does HDP want from us, from our children? We want our children. We are here for our children,” said Fatma Akkus.
Sevket Bingol, one of the fathers, said he hope to reunite with his son, Tuncay Bingol.
“Tuncay, my son, I haven’t seen you for 12 Eid feasts. Hurry and come here during Eid al-Adha. Let’s go home with joy,” said Sevket Bingol.
Bingol said: “We will not leave without taking back our children. I’m staying in Istanbul but I haven’t gone there even during Eid al-Fitr. We have continued our sit-in come hell or high water.”
In its more than 35-year of terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the US, and the EU -- has been responsible for the deaths of at least 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.
* Writing by Merve BerkerAnadolu Agency website contains only a portion of the news stories offered to subscribers in the AA News Broadcasting System (HAS), and in summarized form. Please contact us for subscription options.