Unknown individuals have damaged the grave of Uğur Kaymaz, a child who was shot dead at the age of 12, and that of his father Ahmet Kaymaz, nearly two decades after they were killed under suspicious circumstances, the Mezopotamya news agency reported on Tuesday.
The two were killed in November 2004 at the front door of their home, for which some believe security forces were responsible.
Makbule Kaymaz, Uğur’s mother, pointed out that the vandalism was perpetrated near the anniversary of the incident and that it did not seem to be a coincidence.
“For 19 years, I have been denied the justice that I seek. And now they are attacking his grave,” she said. “They won’t even leave Kurds in peace in their graves.”
The Kaymaz family and their lawyers complain that the lack of accountability for the death of Uğur and Ahmet Kaymaz was a result of the same climate of impunity that was behind the unresolved murders and abductions of Kurds in the 1990s.
Since the 1980s, Turkey’s predominantly Kurdish southeast has been the scene of a violent conflict between Turkish security forces and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), an armed separatist group designated domestically and internationally as a terrorist organization.
The conflict significantly deteriorated the human rights situation in the region where reports of summary killings, enforced disappearances and torture, were particularly frequent at times of military escalation.
The Saturday Mothers, a group of activists seeking accountability for their loved ones who disappeared in custody, have been holding weekly protest vigils in İstanbul since 1995.