How the Turks Build Restrooms in Armenian Cemeteries

How the Turks Build Restrooms in Armenian CemeteriesA columnist of a Turkish opposition media resource T24 Nurcan Baysal covered the topic of the ongoing elimination of Armenian historico-cultural monuments and traces of the Armenian heritage in the territory of Turkey. We offer you the translation of that material.

During the last week, media reported that the municipal authorities of the Edremit Province constructed a public beach with restrooms and dressing rooms in the territory of a historical Armenian cemetery near Van. The whole territory of the cemetery was covered with bones. The head of the administration made the following statement on his Twitter page:

“The news of the Dicle agency on the demolition of an Armenian cemetery and construction of a public beach on its place are false, there are no Armenian cemeteries in the region.”

The head of the administration will undoubtedly try to deny his ignominy. Unfortunately, over the 40 years of my life, I have repeatedly become a witness to similar things, and it no longer surprises me. It merely is a new shameful act towards the Armenian nation, and while arguments were going on, I was looking through the comments on the head’s post. I’ll introduce some of them:

“Armenian traitors and bastards, do not test the patience of the Turkish nation, or you won’t find any tombstone.”

“No Armenians are buried there but mere terrorists.”

“If someone has done it, it has been the Armenians themselves.”

“There haven’t been any restrooms at the cemetery, so this is a favor for our Armenian citizens.”

Should one wonder over the words of such a “person”? They built a restroom on the graves of the Armenians, the citizens of their very state, and yet they dare to threaten. Moreover, it turns out that the restrooms are a favor for the Armenian citizens. Evil, evil, evil!

Subsequently, we will find out that the public beach is closed, that on the site began to work trucks and excavators, and that the leader of the Protestant Church of Van Vakhit Yildiz wasn’t allowed at the beach. Yildiz then told that bones had been accidentally discovered at the site during the excavation.

“In places such as a cemetery or shrine, building such things as restrooms and changing rooms is improper and unethical,” he said. Had it happened with a Muslim cemetery, a mobilization would be likely to take place.

So much violence has been committed in this land. Armenians, Assyrians, Chaldeans… All these nations have been exterminated on our land. Our grandfathers also participated in these massacres and the genocide. I have been living with this shame for years and years. I want to live with it no longer. I do not wish to share the shame for the crap that happened in this country. I do not consider myself a part of such a society. I feel awful anger towards those who committed it. I want to fight against those who carry out these vandalisms, pogroms, and crimes. I want for this to never repeat.

My grandmother Ayshe, who died at the age of 104, often told me how Armenian neighbors were killed back in the days. With hits of shovels, axes, shots, the Armenians were thrown down from the cliff near our village, and my grandmother mourned them until her very last day. She told me that bones speak as well. She told me that she happened to hear the voices of the bones. They asked to take care of them and visit them at least sometimes.

In this country, there is no respect for the dead, for the handful of remaining bones. Here, people kill, starve, imprison, fire from work. But now, we also know that they build restrooms on graves!

But the bones speak…

Nurcan Baysal

According to the latest news of May 31, 2018, the police of Istanbul on Monday arrested individuals who had criticized the military operation of the Turkish army in Afrin. Among the arrested was a writer and columnist of the online media resource T24 Nurcan Baysal. It is stated that the Turkish prosecutor’s office demands their imprisonment for 10 years.


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