PKK’s ‘public order units’ clash with police in Cizre

CİZRE – Doğan News Agency – 21.7.2013 – The Patriot and Revolutionary Youth Movement (YDG-H), the self-styled youth and public order organization of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), has clashed with police in the southeastern province of Şırnak’s Cizre district near the Syrian border.

 The group had gathered to stage a demonstration in support of the Syrian Kurdish fighters affiliated with the Democratic Union Party (PYD), who have been clashing with the jihadist al-Nusra Front in Ras al-Ayn along the Turkish-Syrian border across from Şanlıurfa’s Ceylanpınar district in the last few days. The demonstration drew around 50 masked members of the group, who held torches and flags of the People’s Defense Units (YPG), the PYD’s militant wing.

The provincial head of the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), Bekir Katar, also made a statement before the police called on the group to disperse. Police fired water cannon to scatter the demonstration, prompting demonstrators to set an armored police vehicle on fire with a Molotov cocktail. The clashes, which lasted around an hour, caused panic among the town’s residents, including some women and children who were in the vicinity.