Mountain goats have always been ‘sacred’ animals for the people of Dersim, a Kurdish-Alevi majority province in eastern Turkey.
The hunting of the goats in the mountains of Dersim has caused fierce debate between the residents of the region and the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry. Previously a bid was announced for the hunting of mountain goats in Dersim, but it was canceled after the public outrage.
Villagers who live in the region have been overwhelmed with stress, anger and saddness since they have found more than 20 goats were killed in the previous weeks and they decided to take action against the massacre of these beloved animals of their region.
In the district of Pülümür (Pilemûriye), the villagers launched a vigil to protect the mountain goats from hunters. Peoples’ Democratic Party committee members visited the ongoing vigil.
Alican Önlü, The HDP’s MP for Dersim and Kemal Bülbül, the HDP’s MP for Antalya visited villagers on the mountainous slopes of Dersim.
Kemal Bülbül spoke on behalf of the visiting HDP committee. “Mountain goats are a part of nature. In the beliefs of the Alevi people mountain goats are sacred.,” he said, “Nobody should disturb nature. People should acknowledge that hunting is a cruel massacre and that hunters are murderers.”