Widespread international criticism has been aroused by the Government of Turkey’s forcible eviction of over two million people in the southeast of the country. The sheer brutality of the methods used to evict people and destroy entire villages is less well known, while the fate of those displaced is hardly spoken of at all. Hundreds of thousands of Kurds have been forced to migrate to cities whey face dismal housing and living conditions.
This report looks into a series of difficult questions focused on the housing and human settlements condition faced by the evicted people;
What has happened to the over two million displaced due to the Turkish military operations?
What has happened to the settlements in which they lived?
Where do they go and what housing, health and employment conditions do they face in the areas where they are forced to rebuild their lives?
How have human rights of the displaced people, especially the human right to adequate housing, been affected?
These questions need to be squarely confronted, all the more so because Turkey is hosting the second United Nations Conference on Human Settlements in Istanbul, June 1996. The Government of Turkey’s responsibility for these forced evictions and the subsequent harsh conditions faced by those evicted must be recognized and acted upon. The Habitat International Coalition (HIC) sent a fact-finding team to Turkey in March 1996 to help answer these questions and bring the results to Habitat II.
Report of a Fact Finding Mission (March 1996)