Government website in seven languages but not Kurdish

The state’s approach to the Kurdish language emerges best in the analysis of court records where Kurdish is defined as ‘an unknown language’, ‘language other than Turkish’ or ‘language said to be Kurdish.’ 

A new version of the state’s denial of the Kurdish language is about to come into being with the Parliament’s website. It will be in seven different languages including Russian and Chinese, but not Kurdish.

On the other hand, Kurds are obviously not willing to give up their mother tongue. Fourteen students, including DİHA reporter İsmail Eskin, demanded to testify in Kurdish in a hearing in the 16th Istanbul High Criminal Court today. The court recorded the identification details in Kurdish with the note that they were ‘in a language said to be Kurdish but not understood.’ The judges said they would decide later whether to allow defense in Kurdish or not.

A total of 180 year charge is demanded for 16 defendants on the allegations of carrying out activities on behalf of the illegal organization without being its member and producing illegal propaganda.