DIYARBAKIR, AFP –  11.4.2013 – : Clashes between sympathisers of the Kurdish rebel movement and Islamists that broke out at a university in Turkey’s Kurdish region.

The violence erupted at Dicle University in Diyarbakir city on Monday when the rebel sympathisers confronted others supporting Turkey’s largely defunct Hezbollah movement over Islamic brochures the latter were distributing. Since then, both sides have taken up stones and sticks in running melees. Police sealed off the campus on Tuesday and dispatched a helicopter to rain tear gas down on students in a nearby field in an attempt to disperse the groups. The Turkish police has attacked students in Dicle University in Diyarbakır on Tuesday dropping tear gas from helicopters. The students wanted to protest against a previous incident in which a different group of students had attacked left wing students, Firat news agency reported.

The police baton charged the left wing students who were trying to march in the campus.

Tension continues in the campus area where at least four were reported injured during the conflict Wednesday. Entering the campus area with armored and riot control vehicles, police has taken a number of students and civilians into custody. The number of the injured, two of whom were reportedly stabbed, is feared to increase.

Democratic Society Congress (DTK) co-chair Aysel Tuğluk and Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) Diyarbakir provincial co-chair Zübeyde Zümrüt who have arrived in the campus to express her solidarity with the beaten students have been holding talks with police officers and students who have been targeted by the attacks for the last several days. Releasing a statement on the conflict at the university, DTK condemned the attacks which it commented as a provocation against the ongoing process of talks for a solution to the Kurdish question. DTK called on all national and social circles to display sensitivity and responsibility towards the process. Classes have been cancelled for the rest of the week and at least 10 students are in custody for inciting the clashes, a police source said on condition of anonymity.  Diyarbakir governor Mustafa Toprak said the fight should not be allowed to upset the “sensitive process,” referring to negotiations between Ankara and Abdullah Ocalan, the jailed leader of the rebel Kurdistan Workers’ Party.