By Aziz Aslan
DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (AA) - Families in Turkey whose children have been abducted or forcibly recruited by the PKK terror group continued a sit-in protest on Monday in southeastern Turkey.
The families in the Diyarbakir province have been protesting for 749 days since Sept. 3, 2019 outside the office of the opposition Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), encouraging their children to give up their weapons and surrender to authorities.
Protests outside the office of the opposition HDP in Diyarbakir started with three mothers who said their children were forcibly recruited by the terrorists. The Turkish government accuses the HDP of having links to the PKK terror group.
Demonstrations have since spread to other provinces, including Van, Mus, Sirnak, and Hakkari.
Necibe Ciftci, one of the protesters, said she joined the anti-PKK sit-in for her son, Rosat, who was kidnapped six years ago when he was just 16 years old.
Ciftci said she will continue to protest until she reunites with her son. “I will not leave the protest site until I take my son back from the HDP.”
Calling on her son to surrender to the security forces, she said that she cannot "bear this suffering anymore."
Rahime Tasci, another protesting mother, said that her son, Faruk, was taken to the mountain seven years ago when he was no older than 15 years, and added that she has not heard from him since then.
Tasci said she came from the eastern Kars province to participate in the sit-in.
“The HDP deceived my son, and took him to the PKK. I want my child back from the HDP,” she said.
“They took away pencil from my child’s hand, and instead handed him guns. Do these people, who took away children of 14 or 15 years, not have a conscience?” she questioned.
“Let’s get united. We shall bring these children from the mountain,” Tasci said, urging her son to surrender to the Turkish security forces.
In Turkey, offenders linked to terrorist groups are eligible for possible sentence reductions under a repentance law, if they surrender.
In its more than 35-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK -- listed as a terrorist group by Turkey, the US, and the EU -- has been responsible for the deaths of at least 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.