Between civil uprising and poverty

The Kurdish Culture – between civil uprising and poverty (photos: Benjamin Hiller

[click here to see the photo gallery]

Why another article on Kurds and the Newroz festival?

Kurdish activist during the street battles of Diyarbakir

So many of you keep asking to learn more after the two article we posted (by Sezayi Erken and Marco Palladino ) and so we decided to post something about the latest Kurdish uprising all over Turkey after the traditional Kurdish Newroz festivity (Kurdish New Year) as well as the normal living conditions of Kurdish people and refugees. Becasue this is something happening close to Europe, in a country (Turkey) willing to enter the E.U. that is coping an impetous modern develpment while, at the same time, dealing with many internal contradictions.

The Kurdish conflict in Turkey is now fought since more than 30 years. More than 40.000 people, mostly civilians, got killed, several Million Kurdish people got Internal Displaced People.

Several thousand additional people got killed by paramilitary and right-winged groups. Today there are still more than 4.000 political prisoners in Turkey and the clashes and fightings are still going on. It is a conflict on an high level but without broad media coverage, as Turkey is in the NATO and an important partner for the EU because of is geopolitical position.

Newroz in Diyarbakir

These photos were shot in Diyarbakir, Hasankeyf and Mardin / Southeast Turkey by Benjamin Hiller, young photographer and journalist living in Berlin, Germany. He was born in 1982 into a German-American family and was raised with a humanistic and cosmopolitan world-view.

His main fields in photography are the traditional coverage of social and political conflicts as well as capturing the essence of his subjects in the field of People/Portrait photography. His coverage of these themes have been published in German newspapers, international Magazines as well as via NGOs.

Furthermore, through his studies of ethnology he has become engaged in the area of Travel/Culture photography.

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