Pain fresh 26 years after PKK’s Yavi massacre

ERZURUM, Turkey

Residents of Yavi neighborhood in Turkey’s southern province Erzurum still remember a massacre by PKK terrorists, which killed 33 civilians, including 5 children in 1993.

On Oct. 25, 1993, Yavi neighborhood of Cat district in Erzurum saw one of the most brutal slaughters of PKK terrorists, who arrived in the town with a hijacked-van.

The PKK terrorists raided a coffeehouse in the neighborhood, where people gathered to watch the evening news, and fired at the people with long barreled weapons, killing 33 and injuring 50.

Witnessing the brutal face of the terrorist organization, people of Yavi still remember the day of the massacre, and feel the pain in their hearts as if it happened today.

Abdulcelil Kose, who was seriously injured by seven bullets, told Anadolu Agency that the terrorists with guns arrived at the coffeehouse as people were watching the news.

The terrorists first asked for our identities, Kose said, adding “They gathered us inside the coffeehouse along with some others from the street, and turned the TV off.”

The PKK terrorists then opened fire on everyone inside, without a word, he said.

“32 people were martyred at the scene. Huseyin Dursunoglu, who was injured, later died.

“My father and my uncle were also martyred, and my other uncle was injured,” he added.

“We wish this incident hadn’t happened. The pain we feel at that moment is still fresh today,” Kose said.

Yildirim Yavilioglu, who survived the massacre without injuries, said those who are loyal to their state and nation were targeted on purpose.

“The first martyr of the massacre was Alaattin Akdeniz, who resisted them [the terrorists]. Then they opened fire on all others,” he said.

The fire did not stop for about 10-15 minutes, Yavilioglu said, adding: “I saw them reloading their guns. The fire continued even while they were fleeing with their van.”

“At that evening, I was having tea with my friend. I survived, but he died. I still feel the pain. It’s impossible to forget what happened,” he said.

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