Thousands of women in Turkey’s Kurdish-majority city of Diyarbakır (Amed) flooded to join the demonstration for 8 March International Women’s Day on Tuesday in defiance of attempts by the police to stop them.
The demonstration was organised by the Dicle Amed Women’s Platform with the motto ‘Dem dema azadiya jinan e’ (‘Time for women’s liberation’).
Women chanted slogans, ‘Jin, jiyan, azadî’ (‘Women, life, freedom’) and ‘We’ll resist and prevail’.
Before the addresses, a moment’s silence was observed for Garibe Gezer, the Kurdish political prisoner was subjected to torture and sexual assault for a long time in prison and subsequently found dead on 9 December 2021 in her prison cell under suspicious circumstances.
Berfin Polat, the representative of the Dicle Amed Women’s Platform made the first address, condemning femicide and violence against women.
İnci Güler, a woman who has been participating in a Justice Vigil against rights violations in prisons for nearly four months, called in her address for the release of ill prisoners and prisoners who are kept in jail over arbitrary disciplinary proceedings despite having served their sentences.
Güler celebrated the Women’s Day in memory of Aysel Tuğluk, a prominent Kurdish politician diagnosed with dementia and denied release despite her medical condition.
As Garibe Gezer’s mother, Halime Gezer, stepped up to make an address, the demonstration area shook with applause and zılgıt, an exclamation of rage or suffering. The mother said, “Every one of you is Garibe,’ and made a call for the release of all political prisoners in her address.