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Published On: Sat, Apr 5th, 2014

Deported Armenian-Syrian Women Denounce Turkey’s Erdogan Administration for War Crimes

nsnbc : A group of women from the predominantly ethnic Armenian Syrian city of Kessab, reported that bearded Turkish gunmen had forced them to flee to Turkey instead of Lattakia, and that the Turkish government aided the Jihadi terrorists which swarmed across the Turkish – Syrian border on March 21.

Photo, Aydinlik Daily.

Photo, Aydinlik Daily.

Armenian Syrian women who were deported from the predominantly Armenian-Syrian populated city of Kessab, were interviewed by the Turkish-Armenian newspaper Agos. The women held the government of Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan accountable for the attack by fundamentalist terrorists against the city of Kessab.

The 82 year-old Satenik and the 84-year-old Sirpuhi Titizyan told Agos that they had to hand over their house keys to bearded men who came to their homes as they were getting ready to evacuate the city. The two spoke to Agos journalist Lora Baytar about their experiences after they arrived in the sole remaining ethnic Armenian city, Vakif, in the Samadag district of Hatay province.

The two elderly siblings told journalist Lora Baytar that ten bearded men entered and ransacked their home, saying that they were told not to be frightened and that the men were speaking Turkish, not Arabic. The two women reported that they were deported to the Turkish border, even though they told the men that they wanted to leave for the Syrian port city of Lattakia.

Kessab_SyriaSatenik and Sirpuhi Titizyan reportedly said that they were not treated badly, that the men carried their belongings, and that the tallest of them took them to the district governor in Yayladag kaimakam in Turkey.

There, the 82 and 84 year-old women had their fingerprints taken and their passports confiscated, although they were promised that they would get them back later. The two women said that there, they signed some papers, where after they were taken to Vakhifi.

The Agos reporter asked if they knew that so many men would be attacking the village, to which they replied that that they didn’t know in advance, but that (Turkish P.M.) Erdogan had said he would open the way for them. If Erdogan hadn’t opened the way for them, they would not have come, they said.

The two displaced ladies’ statement is consistent with a statement of the Turkish M.P.,Mehmed Ali Ediboglu, who visited the border crossing at Yayladagi after the initiation of the large-scale military campaign on 21 March. Ediboglu’s observations corroborated statements, according to which the thousands of gunmen which swarmed towards Kessab and entered Syria’s Lattakia province had been aided by the Turkish military.

Kessab_Syria_2The two senior women were apparently not glad about their deportation to Turkey, rather than fleeing to Lattakia. Asked by the Agos journalist what they are thinking about coming to Turkey, they replied that they needed to go “somewhere” because nobody was left there (In Kessab). The two compared their deportation to Turkey with a morsel of bread. If there is only one morsel of bread left in the entire world, we will eat that too, they said.

The two deported Armenian-Syrian women stressed that the Erdogan administration in Turkey is at fault, and denounced the ethnic cleansing of Kessab as a war crime, committed by the Turkish government.

The large-scale, Turkish backed campaign against Lattakia province, is according to analysts part of a strategy that, among others aims at obstructing the transport of chemical weapons to the Syrian port city of Lattakia for political reasons. A delay of the shipments would then be used to justify increased pressure against the Syrian government for “not complying with its obligations”. Russia’s Foreign Minister, Sergei Lavrov, denounced western countries for their failure to condemn terrorism in Syria, the shelling of Lattakia to obstruct chemical weapons transports, and the ethnic cleansing of Armenian Syrians in the city of Kessab.

Ch/L – nsnbc 05.04.2014

Translation of the statements The 82 year-old Siblings Satenik and the 84-year-old Sirpuhi Titizyan told Agos, by Aydinlik Daily.

Read more in our coverage of the ethnic cleansing and military campaign in Kessab, with news, analysis, and opinion, in nsnbc international.

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