US embassy cable - 93ADANA470

KURDS, AND PKK, CONTINUE TO SPREAD WEST

Identifier: 93ADANA470
Wikileaks: View 93ADANA470 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Consulate Adana
Created: 1993-09-10 11:05:00
Classification: CONFIDENTIAL
Tags: PINS PTER TU
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
P 101105Z SEP 93
FM AMCONSUL ADANA
TO SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 6995
INFO AMEMBASSY ANKARA PRIORITY
AMCONSUL ISTANBUL PRIORITY
C O N F I D E N T I A L ADANA 0470 
 
 
E.O.  12356:  DECL:  OADR 
TAGS:  PINS, PTER, TU 
SUBJECT:  KURDS, AND PKK, CONTINUE TO SPREAD WEST 
 
REF: ADANA 0468 
 
1.  CONFIDENTIAL - ENTIRE TEXT 
 
2. RECENT REPORTING FROM ADANA AND OTHER POSTS IN 
TURKEY HAS FOCUSSED ON THE MASS MIGRATION OF KURDS 
FROM THE SOUTHEAST INTO THE LARGE CITIES OF THE WEST. 
AN ITEM IN THURSDAY'S ADANA PRESS SUMMARY SHOWS HOW 
KURDISH MIGRATION IS ALSO PUTTING THE SQUEEZE ON 
TURKISH RESIDENTS IN SMALLER TOWNS BORDERING ON THE 
TRADITIONAL KURDISH AREAS -- AND BRINGING WITH IT THE 
PKK. 
 
3.  ACCORDING TO A "MILLIYET" ITEM ON SEPTEMBER 9 
(PARA 5, REFTEL), PKK MILITANTS ATTACKED THE 
SUMERBANK (A GOVENMENT-OWNED COOPERATIVE) YARN MILL 
IN THE TOWN OF PERTEK ON THE NIGHT OF SEPT 6, KILLING 
THE MILL'S PLANNING CHIEF AND A SECURITY GUARD.  THE 
MILITANTS THEN TORCHED THE MILL.  SECURITY TROOPS 
REPORTEDLY ARRIVED AS THE MILITANTS WERE LEAVING, AND 
KILLED ONE.  THE REST PRESUMABLY ESCAPED.  PERTEK, A 
TOWN IN TUNCELI PROVINCE ABOUT HALFWAY BETWEEN 
TUNCELI AND ELAZIG ON THE NORTH SHORE OF THE KEBAN 
RESERVOIR, HAS BEEN ALMOST WHOLLY POPULATED BY ETHNIC 
TURKS SINCE THE ARMENIAN RESIDENTS WERE REMOVED OR 
EXTERMINATED DURING WORLD WAR I.  THE MOTHER OF ONE 
OF CONSULATE ADANA'S EMPLOYEES HALES FROM PERTEK, AND 
THE EMPLOYEE KNOWS THE TOWN, AND WAS A DISTANT 
RELATIVE OF ONE OF THE MEN KILLED IN THE YARN MILL 
ATTACK. 
 
4.  ACCORDING TO THE EMPLOYEE'S RELATIVES, THERE HAD 
BEEN NO SIGNS OF KURDISH UPRISING VIOLENCE IN THE 
TOWN UNTIL THIS SUMMER, AND THE ATTACK ON THE MILL 
WAS THE FIRST ATTACK EVER INSIDE THE TOWN.  THE ONLY 
OTHER PREVIOUS INCIDENT, ALSO THIS SUMMER, INVOLVED 
GUNMEN -- PRESUMABLY KURDISH MILITANTS -- FIRING DOWN 
ON A NEARBY JANDARMA STATION FROM SURROUNDING HILLS. 
THE ATTACK ON THE MILL, HOWEVER, WAS DIRECTED AGAINST 
A GOVERNMENT-OWNED FACTORY, AND INCIDENTALLY, THE 
ONLY MAJOR EMPLOYER IN TOWN. 
 
5.  FROM THE TIME OF THE ARMENIAN REMOVALS UNTIL THE 
LAST 4 OR SO YEARS, PERTEK HAD REMAINED ALMOST 
EXCLUSIVELY TURKISH.  IN THE LAST 4 YEARS, LARGE 
NUMBERS OF ZAZA KURDS FROM TUNCELI HAVE MOVED INTO 
THE TOWN, BOUGHT PROPERTY AND BUILT HOUSES, ALL 
APPARENTLY HOPING TO ESCAPE THE VIOLENCE IN AND 
AROUND TUNCELI.  THE NUMBERS OF KURDS AND TURKS IN 
PERTEK ARE NOW ABOUT EQUAL, OR PERHAPS EVEN WEIGHTED 
SLIGHTLY IN FAVOR OF THE KURDS.  THE TWO GROUPS DO 
NOT MIX, AND KEEP THEIR DISTANCE FROM EACH OTHER. 
KURDISH MEN DO NOT, FOR EXAMPLE, GO TO TURKISH TEA 
HOUSES, AND VICE VERSA. 
 
6.  EVEN BEFORE THE PKK FOLLOWED THE KURDISH 
MIGRANTS, MANY ETHNIC TURKS HAD ALREADY LEFT PERTEK, 
CITING THE OTHER PROBLEMS THE KURDISH MIGRANTS 
BROUGHT WITH THEM.  HOWEVER, OUR EMPLOYEE'S RELATIVES 
HAVE RESISTED, HAVING THEIR ROOTS AND BUSINESSES IN 
TOWN.  IT WILL BEAR WATCHING WHETHER THIS ATTACK, AND 
THE RESULTING JOBLESSNESS, WILL ACCELERATE THE 
TURKISH FLIGHT FROM SMALL TOWNS LIKE PERTEK. 
 
7.  COMMENT: IN THE PAST MONTH OR SO, THE TURKISH 
PRESS HAS REPORTED GREAT GOVERNMENT SUCCESS IN THE 
SOUTHEAST, CITING FIGURES OF OVER 1000 PKK 
FATALITIES.  THESE REPORTS ARE PRESUMABLY BASED ON 
TGS PRESS RELEASES, WHICH PROBABLY HAVE MORE 
PROPAGANDA THAN NEWS VALUE.  BUT WHILE THE TGS IS 
CLAIMING VICTORY IN THE AREAS AROUND HAKKARI, SIRNAK, 
AND DOGUBEYAZIT, THE PKK CONTINUES TO STRIKE IN OTHER 
PARTS OF THE SOUTHEAST.  AS THIS AND OTHER ATTACKS 
SHOW, THE MILITANTS CAN EVEN VENTURE INTO NEW AREAS. 
 
8.  FURTHER COMMENT: ALTHOUGH THE PRESS REPORTS 
REFERRED TO THE ATTACKERS AS PKK MILITANTS, AND THERE 
IS NO EVIDENCE TO THE CONTRARY, TUNCELI PROVINCE HAS 
BEEN A BASE FOR THE TURKISH WORKERS AND PEASANTS 
LIBERATION ARMY (TIKKO).  IT IS POSSIBLE THAT TIKKO 
ELEMENTS CARRIED OUT THE ATTACK, BUT THE LARGER AND 
MORE NOTORIOUS PKK GOT THE CREDIT.  END COMMENTS. 
 
 
WARREN 

Latest source of this page is cablebrowser-2, released 2011-10-04