Whether a Turkish citizen who provides money, food and clothing for Kurds would face penalties (1998-1999) [TUR31383.E]

According to a representative of the Turkish Human Rights Foundation in Ankara, whether a person would be penalized for aiding Kurds depends on the location of the Kurds (1 Apr. 1999). If a Turkish citizen provides aid to Kurds in western Turkey it is very unlikely that the person would face any problems. However, if a Turkish citizen provides aid to Kurds in eastern Turkey, a region that has been devastated by the conflict between the PKK and the army, it is more likely that the person would be arrested and prosecuted for aiding a "terrorist" organization.

The editor of Kurdnasi, an academic review focusing on Kurdish issues, stated that it is very difficult for Turkish security forces to distinguish between aiding Kurdish civilians and the PKK (31 Mar. 1999). Penalties for helping a "terrorist" organization would be between 1 to 2 years in prison.

This Response was prepared after researching publicly accessible information currently available to the Research Directorate within time constraints. This Response is not, and does not purport to be, conclusive as to the merit of any particular claim to refugee status or asylum.


Editor of Kurdnasi, a magazine focusing on Kurdish issues, New York. 31 March 1999. Telephone interview.

Turkish Human Rights Foundation, Ankara, Turkey. 1 April 1999. Telephone interview with representative.

Additional Sources Consulted

Bulloch, John and Morris, Harvey. 1996. No Friends but the Mountains: the Tragic History of the Kurds. New York: Oxford University Press.

Electronic sources: Internet (Kurdish Websites), WNC, LEXIS-NEXIS

Gunter, Michael. 1990. Kurds in Turkey: A Political Dilemma. Boulder, CO: Westview Press.

Human Rights Watch. 1990. Destroying Ethnic Identity: Kurds of Turkey; An Update. New York: Human Rights Watch Publications.

Kurdistan Times: A Biannual PoliticalJournal. Fairfax, VA: Mustafa Al Karadaghi.

McDowall, David. 1996. Modern History of the Kurds. London: I.B. Tauris.

_____. 1996. Kurds. Rev. 7th ed. No. 96. London: Minority Rights Group Publication.

_____. 1996. Briefing Note Regarding the Current Status of Alevi Kurds. St.John's: Newfoundland Legal Aid Commission.

_____. 1991. Kurds. 6th ed. No. 91. London: Minority Rights Group (MRG).

Middle East and North Africa 1998. 1998. "Turkey". London: Europa Publications.

Parliamentary Human Rights Group. 1996. Kurdish Region in Turkey: the Most Destructive Conflict in the Northern Hemisphere. London: Kurdistan Information Centre.