Scholarly article on topic 'Forced Migration based Upon the Experiences of Female Sufferers: Diyarbakır City Case Study'

Forced Migration based Upon the Experiences of Female Sufferers: Diyarbakır City Case Study Academic research paper on "Sociology"

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{"Forced migration" / "female sufferers" / "social traumas" / "migration-induced problems" / "Southeastern Anatolia" / Diyarbakır}

Abstract of research paper on Sociology, author of scientific article — Nurettin Özgen

Abstract An unexpected and disorganised influx of displaced people from the rural areas of the south and southeast of Turkey, from 1990 through 2000 in particular, to the nearby urban places and to metropolises resulted in severe social traumatic experiences for all those involved in the process. For this reason, Diyarbakır city was chosen as study area. The problems encountered by the female population in the aftermath of forced migration were handled with the help of the interview method, one of the commonest methods of quality. 13 women altogether were interviewed and the data obtained from these informants form the basis of the results of this study. The data obtained by interviewing were evaluated thoroughly through a content analysis.

Academic research paper on topic "Forced Migration based Upon the Experiences of Female Sufferers: Diyarbakır City Case Study"

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Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences 120 (2014) 433 - 442

The 3rd International Geography Symposium - GEOMED2013

Forced migration based upon the experiences of female sufferers:

Diyarbakir city case study

Nurettin Ozgen*

Ankara University, Faculty ofLanguages, History and Geograhy, GeographyDepartment, 06100, Ankara - Turkey


An unexpected and disorganised influx of displaced people from the rural areas of the south and southeast of Turkey, from 1990 through 2000 in particular, to the nearby urban places and to metropolises resulted in severe social traumatic experiences for all those involved in the process. For this reason, Diyarbakir city was chosen as study area. The problems encountered by the female population in the aftermath of forced migration were handled with the help of the interview method, one of the commonest methods of quality. 13 women altogether were interviewed and the data obtained from these informants form the basis of the results of this study. The data obtained by interviewing were evaluated thoroughly through a content analysis.

© 2013TheAuthors.PublishedbyElsevier Ltd.


Keywords: Forced migration; female sufferers; social traumas; migration-induced problems; Southeastern Anatolia; Diyarbakir.

1. Introduction

Migration by force, namely, being forced to leave one's home or country, is an act that typically occurs due to political turmoil or wars, and involves serious threats to man's life. In other words, it is an act of forcefully driving people who fail to agree with the political beliefs of governments, armed militants or paramilitary groups from their homeland in a troublesome area. What seems to be more effective in displacing the sufferers of war or internal conflicts is a well-organized political decision. Therefore, in removing the refugees from their homeland by force,

* Corresponding author. Tel: +90 (0312) 310 32 80/ 1242; fax: +90 (312) 310 57 13 E-mail address:

1877-0428 © 2013 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.

Selection and peer-review under responsibility of the Organizing Committee of GE0MED2013. doi: 10.1016/j.sbspro.2014.02.121

political, ethnic, various belief-based conflicts, as wells as employing chemical weapons in the time of war, have been reported to affect the removal of the displaced (Ozgen, 2012).

Even though the terms "compulsory migration" and ''forced migration" tend to be used interchangeably, these are population-related actions that actually differ largely in causes and partly in effects. In the case of compulsory force, the victims are sufferers of natural or human-induced disasters, such as landslide and earthquake, or vendetta due to a dispute over the inheritance to be shared between family members, apart from other factors like drought or unemployment. By contrast, in the case of forced migration, chances for losing one's life are very high, and this is attributable to human-induced disasters. The case in which a population is forcefully banished from where they live due to either force down to political pressure or weapons has been described as "forced migration" (Ozgen, 2012).

Forced migration has so far been seen in nearly every region of the world, and is still continuing. For examples, around 200.000 Crimean Tatar people were expelled from their homeland and exiled to unliveable remote regions of Central Asia and Siberia through railway. Another example is that of the Kurdish people who were fortunate enough to survive the chemical war waged on them in 1988 by the Iraqi government, and were able to take refuge in the neighbouring countries, primarily in Turkey. Yet another example is that of the hundreds of thousands of Bosnians who appeared to be posing a threat for the Serbs when they asked to part with the Serbs and declare their freedom, as a result of which they were kicked out of the country (Ozgen, 2012). Furthermore, thousands of Palestinians have been forced to abandon Palestine by the Israeli government. One study has reported a few cases of forced migration experienced in Turkey, among which is the exodus of Armenians in 1915, the chaos in the Thrace Region and infamous events of 6-7 of September in 1955 (Ozgen, 2010). As to the rest of the world, we can see Muslims fleeing the atrocity they suffer at the hands of the oppressive Buddhist groups. These are all good cases of how people are made to leave where they live because they cannot cope with the pressure and force put on them any longer.

Turkey has been a country where a significant amount of migration has occurred due to chaos and armed conflict for the past four decades. In particular, the Kurdish population that was forced to abandon their villages or towns between 1990 and 2000 because of the incessant conflicts between the Turkish government and the PKK (Kurdistan Workers' Party) has caused very many significant social problems. Unfortunately, the weakest link and one of those suffering the most were women. The people who were made to leave their towns or villages in the East and Southern-East of Turkey moved to either the neighboring large cities or metropolises like Istanbul. However, this kind of sudden and unplanned migration gave rise to serious social traumas, such as undermining the concept of family in which women suffered a good deal, and the newcomers to the cities or metropolises felt detached from the new culture they were introduced into (igduygu and Unalan, 1998).

There are known to be reports prepared by various governmental and non-governmental organizations which suggest that forced migration result not only in social but also economical costs. For instance, the loss suffered due to forced migration in production levels across the rural areas between 1990 and 1999 is estimated to vary between 3 and 5 million dollars in Turkey.

According to the Ministry of Domestic Affairs of Turkey in 1995, who was asked a question concerning the villages evacuated by force, replied that 37 villages and 54 hamlets of Batman, 150 villages and 194 hamlets of Bingol, 76 villages and 95 hamlets of Bitlis, 115 villages and 196 hamlets of Diyarbakir, 38 villages and 93 hamlets of Hakkari, 154 villages and 657 hamlets of Tunceli, 96 villages and 110 hamlets of §irnak. In total, 982 villages and 1.674 hamlets were evacuated and 49.593 families and 310.921 individuals had to leave their homeland. According to Human Rights Society of Turkey (HRST), the number of the villages and hamlets that were either evacuated or set on fire was not lower than 3.500. Interestingly enough, Human Rights Society (HRS) estimates this number to be 3.246 and Social Relief for Emigrants (GOC-DER) estimates it to be 4.500. On the other hand, according to the Investigation of Immigration Commission in the Grand National Assembly of Turkey, the number of evacuated villages was 2.663 (Kayar, 2009).

The process of migration causes different consequences for the individuals involved. For example, the process and effects of migration upon those leaving their homeland in search of employment and those forced to move for political reasons will vary. Socioeconomic situation, ethnic and religious identities, and cultural traits are what determine how the sufferers of the displacement phenomenon will be affected. As was reported by Ozbek (1998: 113), migration literature shows us what conditions are effective in the experience of moving from one place to another, such as the social position of those emigrating in their own homeland, the skills acquired in the meantime, being furnished with education and expectation/desire, characteristics of the individual history, the reasons for and

patterns of migration, the social conditions of the new place. According to ilkkaracan & ilkkaracan (1999:305), the existing studies have revealed that there are significant differences between men and women in terms of reasons for migration, involvement in the process of migration, life experiences and consequences of migration, attitudes and reactions of the migrants. What seems to form the basis for such a difference is the labour division within the family and the social roles imposed on men and women by customs and traditions. Generally, the experiences of such women concerning migration closely relate to their position in the family as either a mother already or a girl about to marry. Their relationship with the place they were forced out of and the one they moved to is also based upon this.

Studies into the relationship between "women and migration" report that gender also play as significant a role in the process of migration, a process including both spatial and social changes, as that of socioeconomic class, culture, ethnicity or national identity. Despite being as important as the other identities, studies into migration tend to ignore the role of gender and so fail to work out this phenomenon. Therefore, the results and findings of these studies have so far been generalized for women though they actually represent those of men (Yilmaz, 2005:33).

As was first reported by ilkkaracan & ilkkaracan (1999:321) migration, one of the most important social phenomena of our age that has brought on some very crucial socio-political changes, tends to be studied and evaluated within a framework of male-dominance, whether investigated for social or political purposes. Women constitute an invisible population as regards evaluation of the dynamism of migration as well as effects of and solutions to the problems induced by migration. Therefore, viewing the issue of forced migration from the viewpoint of women and knowing the reflections concerning the phenomenon of migration are important if we are to be aware of social peace and sensitivity. Likewise, Harding (1996:310), claims that experiences of women vary and diversify depending upon such factors as the type of migration, socioeconomic status and familial structure of the emigrants, the difference between the indigenous and host cultures, social and economical structures; furthermore, the fact that not even the women experiencing the same kind of migration (e.g. moving from rural areas to urban ones) are affected in the same way indicates that adopting a homogenous approach will not always yield factual results.

2. Purpose

This study aims to determine how women suffering the consequences of forced migration are affected by the process based upon the realistic stories of the women forced out of their homeland. With this in mind, this paper seeks to analyze the effects of forced migration upon the female population forced to live in the city of Diyarbakir after being forced to leave their villages in various regions across the east and southeast of Turkey between 1990 and 200. In brief, this paper aims to form a pertinent conceptual pattern with the help of accounts and experiences of these women.

3. Problem

The basic question of this study concerns the problems that the female emigrants encountered during and after the forced migration and what other troubles this process may have caused for them from 1990 through 2000. Here are the questions need to be answered:

• What are the reasons for those forced to emigrate in the opinion of women?

• What are the chief economic problems that women forced out of their homeland suffer?

• What are the experience and viewpoints of women forced to emigrate as to social belonging and adaptive impact?

• What are the domestic responsibilities of the women forced to migration and the psychological reflections of them in the aftermath of migration?

4. Methods

The present study was conducted by putting questions to the women forced to migration with the help of the qualitative method of "interviewing". Based upon the assumption that women and men would have different experience and form dissimilar conceptions in the course of migration, this study was conducted by interviewing every single female participant in person so that they could express themselves better and give a clearer picture of

migration. In the meantime, care was taken to offer the subjects a comforting enough atmosphere in which they could have a relaxed conversation. Incidentally, all the interviews were recorded. Observation and interviewing, two of the most popular qualitative methods, aim to capture and appreciate relativity and dynamism of social phenomena, even if for a split second. The biggest advantages of these two methods are the fact that they enable the interviewers to take a look at the issue being studied with the eye of the individuals, and that these methods help the observers to reveal social structures and processes forming the viewpoints of those being observed (Glaser and Strauss, 1967, cited: Yildirim, §im§ek, 1999). The purpose of a qualitative study is to comprehend and/or evaluate the social world that is investigated. The scope of the study is made up of one or more social worlds (typical case/s). While the number of those responding to the questions prepared for the pertaining purpose tends to be low, the process of the study takes a long time. The techniques used for obtaining data include participatory observation, in-depth interview, focus group discussion and life story. In the end of a qualitative study, the phenomenon in question is provided with a lively and multi-dimensional depiction (Dikegligil, 2000).

Before the present study could be commenced, it was necessary to contact and interview the female sufferers of forced migration. Therefore, the sources of data to get in contact with were chiefly the headmen, while some institutions like GO£-DER, KA-MER (Society of women) and HRA (Human right Association) were also contacted. Thus, the population to be included in the study was determined. This is exactly how people who were forced to leave their homeland and move to cities from 1990 through 2000 in Turkey were accessed. Meanwhile, the necessary informed consent and official permission were obtained and a good deal of effort was put in so that the participants could answer the questions in a relaxed atmosphere afterwards (Buyukozturk, 2005).

4.1. Population and Sample

While Diyarbakir, one of the cities that have suffered most from forced migration, forms the population of the study, the sample consists of 13 women having moved to Diyarbakir from the towns of this city like Lice, Silvan, Kulp, and from the rural areas of the Dicle.

4.2. Limitations

The findings of this study are restricted to the experiences and stories of only 13 female sufferers of forced migration who moved to Diyarbakir once they had been displaced from their homeland.

5. Analysis

5.1. Forced Migration In Relation To the Experiences of Female Sufferers

A large number of people were forced out of their homeland due to the regional conflicts occurring between the Turkish army and the PKK in the East and Southeast of Turkey between 1990 and 2000, and so these people had to move from rural areas to urban ones, which resulted in many problems for the victims of this process. This internal war with a low intensity appears to have given rise to several serious and multi-dimensional social consequences. The Turkish armed forces evacuated thousands of villages and hamlets on the basis of the fact that these places either functioned as, or simply had a potential for, logistic and material supply for the PKK. While some villages were burned down by the separatists, there were some villages that were declared to be "treacherous" just because they were begun to be defended by the armed fighters chosen from among the local population by the Turkish government. For example, 69 of the subjects (9) stated that they were forced out of their homeland due to the allegation that they had been helping the separatists, while 31% (4) stated that they were forced to emigrate by the Turkish armed forces due to lack of security. A study by Gokturk (1996) arrived at similar findings. In this study, 43.6% of the emigrants are reported to have left their homeland because of the terrorist attacks in the region after 1990 while the remaining (58.1%) hadto move because their villages had been burned down.

As a result of the confrontations between the PKK and Turkish soldiers, as was reported by Yilmaz in 2005, the Turkish government evacuated the villages either because the inhabitants refused to be armed by the Turkish government against the separatists or because there was lack of security attributable to incessant conflicts occurring

around these places. In addition, the reasons for the villages being evacuated appear to have been multi-dimensional. However, the chief reason seems the fact that the evacuated villages were right in the middle of close combats that had been going on for a long while. That the Turkish armed forces aimed to fight off the PKK across a very large, uninhabited area seems to have been the unstated reason for the evacuation of thousands of villages and hamlets in the south of Turkey. As a part of this plan, it is assumed that the Turkish governments offered the villagers to be temporarily armed with heavy weapons. While some of them readily accepted this offer of the government, some others firmly refused to be involved in the combat with the separatists despite all the tempting financial potential. However, neither alternative that the villagers were asked to choose from resulted in peace, on account of the fact that those agreeing to be involved in the combat as armed ranchers were continually teased and oppressed by the separatists, while those refusing to be involved were to be looked at with perpetual suspicion. What is more, the villages that wished to be disinterested in the combats against the separatists were constantly searched and exposed to military operations by the Turkish soldiers on the assumption that these were or were thought to be giving logistic support to the PKK (75 Yilda Koylerden §ehirlere, 1999, cited: Yilmaz, 2005). The experiences and stories of §ukriye, one of the female suffers of forced migration, aged 46, are in agreement with this view:

"There were intensive combats where we used to live during 1995. One day Turkish soldiers came to our village and gathered all of us in the quarter of the village, claiming that we had been supporting the PKK fighters financially and logistically. How could I have known that it was going to be the last day I would see my homeland? We wereforced to leave there without delay. I will never forget either the gunshots or the overwhelmingfear I had or the horrified look on theface of the children. Even there were some of us who were barefoot. We spent the night in a neighbouring village but I did not take long to understand that our village had been burned down already by the blazes that lightened the sky all night. Afterwards, we moved to Diyarbakir and settled in the house of a relative of ours "

It is unfortunate that thousands of villages and hamlets were evacuated and the inhabitants were forced to emigrate in the Southeast of Turkey between 1990 and 1995. A report issued by an investigation commission appointed by the Turkish Grand National Assembly on 14th January 1998 revealed that 905 villages and 2.523 hamlets were evacuated and the peasants were forced to migrate to other parts of the country (Aygun, 2006). In line with the results of this report, the account of emigration by Fahriye, who had to leave her village around the town of Lice, aged 51, reveals the heart-rending story of the forced migration:

"The PKK forces occasionally visited our village and asked to be fed and dressed. Whether we gave in to their wishes or not, it was sure to cause trouble for us. The reason was simple: we were torn between the Turkish soldiers and the terrorists. This is why we went through hard times. The Turkish soldiers expelled us from our houses, claiming that we had been helping the terrorists. However, they did not ask us whether we were hungry or had any stuff to support us. All we could do was to abandon our village and ranfor our lives, with all our land, livestock, and gardens left unattended".

The struggle of the oppressed population for their rights in the mayhem was first made in the domestic courts and then continued in the European Court of Human Rights. As a result of many appeals, the Turkish government was sentenced to paying billions of dollars to the innocent displaced population.

5.2. EconomicReflections ofForced Migration inAccordance With theExperience of Women

There is a tendency of categorization between employers and employees for the sustainability of social harmony and a hierarchical sovereignty. Looking at those who live unlike us or who we do not have common interests with is what cannot be ignored as far as regulation of employment concerning the employer and the employee is concerned. For example, the number of the unemployed Turkish migrants in Germany is 32, 5%, this number is only 11% for those of German origin. Likewise, the number of unemployed Turkish people is 39%, the number of the unemployed Belgians is 9,9 %. The same is true for France, where the number of unemployed migrants is 25% while it is only 9,9 for those of French origin (Pekoz, 2012: 324-325).

The unexpected removal of the women who constitute at least half the emigrants from the place which they have built affinity with and which they feel they have always belonged to is believed to have given rise to economic

problems, apart from many others. The story of Nebahat, a woman driven out of Silvan, aged 58 is a good example for this:

"We were involved in diverse agricultural activities as a 'whole family during the time we lived in our village. We never had monetary problems. We were also actively involved in animal husbandry. This is 'why we felt like afish out of water when we did move to Diyarbakir, where we were forced to beg for food in order to survive. All my husband could do in the city was to work for low wages here and there. As for my son, he moved to Istanbul to support our family. In a way, my family members were forced to divorce from each other, which I deeply resent. Ever since we left our village, I have asked myself what we could have done to deserve such an inhumane punishment".

It so appears that there is no winning side in the case of forced migration and both sides suffer big losses. For example, according to the data provided by Ministry of Domestic Affairs, 3.688 villages and hamlets were evacuated along with 353.288 peasants and ranchers in the South and South-east of Turkey. Of these, 127.820 people were persuaded to move back to where they had been banished from thanks to the project devised by the name of "Reverting to the village". Up to date, 69.832 applications have been made, and 1.253 of the 1.595 application files were rejected, with only 342 being accepted. However, those having been rejected were not late in appealing to the International Human Rights Court to seek their rights. Therefore, 1500 appeals were made and Turkey was sentenced to pay 4.8 million Turkish liras as a result of the 24 cases that ended in favour of the plaintiffs. This is of course only one the many consequences that were suffered by the Republic of Turkey. What is more, it is estimated that Turkey would have to pay around 14 million dollars as compensation for the sufferings of the 69.490 migrants if they were to sue Turkey (Basin Ar^ivi, 2005). Even though a large amount of the material damage suffered by the migrants is compensated for by the Turkish government, some people claim that nothing will ever be the same. The reason, in their opinion, is that it is hard to imagine people being willing to go back to their villages once they have been removed from their village and forced to survive in the city life for more than 10 years. The kids have now got used to living among the hustles and bustles of the city life and have grown up in a less conventional way than they parents had done in the village. Naturally, these teenagers will be reluctant about embarking on a new adventure. The story of Fatma who was forced out of Dicle, aged 45, seems to be good evidence for this assumption:

"The kids were always preoccupied with agricultural chores. For this reason, they were kind of unemployed when we settled in the city. Furthermore, they got used to playing and wandering in the streets and made new friends. They even began disobeying their elders. Furthermore, we suffered a great deal because of financial difficulties, which is why I failed to provide my children with enough allowance. However, everything was going alright in the village where we always had surplus of food and other stuff. You know here in the city, we have to pay tax even for garbage. Even so, my children are reluctant about reverting to the village life. Of course, I would be very happy if they were convinced of going back, but I'm not so hopeful that they 'would be".

A study by Yukseker (2008: 222) revealed that the ones suffering most from the phenomenon of forced migration both during and after tend to be those over 50 in terms of social and cultural aspects.

5.3. Social Belonging Concerning and Adaptation Problem Induced By Forced Migration in Female Emigrants

The fact that those forced to leave a location of a certain size or thrown out of a labour market in order to settle in a new society are required to adapt to new social relationships is known to be accompanied by several adaptation problems (Tekeli, 2008: 174). One of the most significant of these is that emigrants tend to lack the ability to acclimatize the new social environment or be rejected by the host society. Thus, this may result in leading an isolated life that on the4 part of the emigrants due to being ostracised by the new society and deprived of some economic, social, and cultural activities. Also, there is mounting evidence that social exclusion involves very many processes and is attributable to more than one source, upon which several studies seem to agree (Du Toit, 2004; Atkinson, 2000; Byrne, 1999).

It is a fact that elements of social exclusion due to forced migration have a multi-dimensional nature, and that these elements are not independent of one another. Getting socially excluded in one aspect may well trigger other processes. Likewise, presence of an element may cause an increase in the effect of another. This being the case, the phenomenon of social exclusion that is triggered by forced migration will repeat itself among prospective

generations unless action has been taken (Yukseker, 2008: 220). The relationship between man, a social being, and his environment thus gains crucial importance. Understandably, it will not be that easy for a woman to settle in a new environment for which she had not made any preparations before she arrived there. She is also expected to suffer from inability to sustain healthy relationships with this new social environment. The story of 51-year-old year §aile, who was forced to migration together with her family, serves as good evidence for this case:

"We hired a house in the slum area when we moved to Diyarbakir. We did not have much difficulty in getting used to our neighbours because most of them already shared the same story as ours. Our daily problems were what made us impatient, which is why we sometimes got into quarrels or rows. Actually, all these were implications of the hard times we had been going through. Even so, we somehow managed to survive without going astray because some of the neighbours had got into the bad habit of mugging and other illegal acts in order to survive. My auntfled to Sakarya, a city in the western part of Turkey, with her family but she keeps complaining about some problems they have been sufferingfrom. They get discriminated against because of their ethnicity and way of life. Therefore, they have been socially excludedfrom the rest of the neighbourhood and have lost the sense of belonging there. So my aunt keeps saying that they want to come back here".

The sense of belonging to the social environment that man lives in has big effects on man's behavioural attitudes and his ability to adapt to the environment, as well as having effects upon the typical course of daily life. What is more, these effects trigger off many consequences. As was emphasized by Ozgen in (2012), migration is the venture of leaving one's homeland due to migration, natural disasters or human-induced factors in search of a comfortable life. However, the population driven out of their land by forced migration has expressed their discontent with the new environment they have to get used to (8 people), apart from uneasiness and restlessness (5 people), in their struggle for survival.

5.4. Responsibilities for domestic affairs in thefamilyfollowingforced migration and its psychological consequences

The fact that women tend to be exploited in many ways, such as being made to work in the toughest jobs, and that they are often exposed to either domestic violence or molestation or rape, apart from being forced to adultery have led several international institutions to naming them "Slaves of the 21st century" (Pekoz, 2012: 214). Such dismissive and eliminative attitudes may result in profound and traumatic effects for women, those forced to migration in particular. Therefore, the problems ensuing forced migration can be said to perfectly mirror the dark face of the modern world. 6 of the 13 informants (46%) reported that they knew of some women who became streetwalkers soon after they had arrived in the city and of some others who got involved in mugging to be able to survive. The account of Saliha from Lice, aged 53, serves as a good example of the complex pattern of this phenomenon:

In the aftermath of forced migration, my brother-in-love had to move to Istanbul with his family. One of his daughters got employed in afactory where she was raped by the owner of the factory, after which she was disowned by the boss and so had to run away. However, she was murdered by her older brother immediately after she had been recovered in order to save the honour of the humiliated family. This traumatic experience had scarring effects on the psychology of the family. Therefore, the mother began to receive professional help in a psychiatric clinic and herfather began to lead a secluded life. We all were deeply affected by this heart-rending trauma".

We human beings have a tendency to build affinity with the environment we are born into and grow up in, and so we eventually develop a sense of belonging. The climate of our natural environment, whether it includes a river or a forest or a pasture, is known to influence our personality and psychology and, in turn, influence our lives. This intrinsic relationship man has with space is best represented in the story of Raife from Lice, aged 57:

Raife said, "We had a very nice village. We had abundant food and other stuff. We never knew what being hungry could mean. However, all these were reversed, because everything is done in returnfor afavour or interest here in the city. While we were used to breathing fresh air all the time, we got exposed to humid air and pollution. Everything here is mind-numbing, so we almost went crazy on a few occasions. We began having quarrels in the home because my husband failed to get a steady job. In a way, all of us sujferedfrom the bad consequences. Now,

when I look back on what I have experienced so far, I see that the cruel and the powerful have everything at hand but we don't".

6. Conclusion

In the international literature of law, forced migration has been defined by the universal declaration of human rights as a humanity crime in which the powerful oppress the weak and may even cause them to lose their lives. In other words, it is a cruel act of using disproportionate power against the disadvantaged. The experiences that the sufferers of forced migration in the South and Southeast of Turkey (from 1990 through 2000) went through both during and after the migration by force have shown that social, cultural and psychological consequences of this process constitute an interrelated assortment of problems. Diyarbakir, one of the cities having received a large amount of this displaced population experienced a dramatic rise in its population. The evidence for this is that its population increased from 373.000 to 545.000 within a very short time (Turkish Statistical Institution-2012).

Fig. 1. Map of the concept of "forced migration" based upon the experiences and accounts of the female sufferers

Despite the drastic increase in population, the city of Diyarbakir, which lacks sufficient socioeconomic resources, quality infrastructure services, has been a location where unemployment and other problems concerning sufferers of forced migration are on the increase. The fact that people were banished from their homeland and then exposed to a disorganized pattern of displacement seem to have caused many problems for them, particularly for women and children, since they were forced to get used to a totally new way of life. The reason why men tend to get affected less by the forced migration than do women is that men are not confined to the home and are free to roam about the city in consideration of the predominant cultural way of life that allows men to wander freely when compared to their wives. All these negative factors taken into account, it is not that difficult to recognise that women suffer so

much more from the tough conditions of urban life as they struggle with the social structure of the region they are forced to live in, which is suggestive of the fact that women are more profoundly affected by the forced migration. Whether directly or indirectly, the phenomenon of "forced migration" that occurred in Turkey between 1990 and 2000 has had a profound negative impact upon a large amount of the population of the region. It is a well-documented fact that the weakest link of a given society, that is women and children, are inclined to suffer so much more especially if this society is lacking a right and proper modern life, as well as a lacking a well-functioning law system. Based upon the statements provided by these female sufferers, the present study devised a conceptual pattern for the problems and consequences associated with the phenomenon of "forced migration" that occurred from 1990 through 2000 in the south and southeast of Turkey (Fig.l).

• The rural population was observed to be suffering too much from the fact that they were forced to leave their villages once their houses had been burned down either by the PKK fighters or the Turkish forced arms, since this disadvantaged population developed psychological problems associated with the depression they found themselves in

• This disorganised pattern of migration by force resulted in difficulty adapting to the urban life on the part of the migrants, and they were not immune to some diseases that they went down with in the city life as they had been thrown out of their natural habitats.

• It was determined that the population displaced from their villages and hamlets suffered a lot of financial problems, which is part of the reason why some got involved in mugging and some others began taking drugs, and still others got into drug trafficking. What is even more heart-rending is that some women felt obliged to prostituting to support her family. Of course, all these resulted in problems for the domestic life of the family, some of which caused severe quarrels between family members and murder of the ones involved in illegal demeanours.

• It was also determined that all the negative effects brought about by the forced migration could account for the division observed in the rural and urban areas involved in this process. It could also be the reason for the loss of sense of security between different walks of life, which resulted in sociological tensions.

In conclusion, the act of forced migration is not simply removal of a population from where they live by armed forces or separatist groups. Rather, such phenomena do disrupt the conventional harmony and life standards, as well as causing several social, cultural and economical mayhems that, in turn, trigger other chaotic situations. In a transition region like Turkey, which spans Europe and Asia, women are destined to be abused and teased in a society ruled by traditional set of laws, and so they are likely to suffer more traumas that undermine the concept of family, a vital pillar fostering sustainability of society. In order to avoid or get rid of these consequences, it is necessary that a concrete step should be taken to make sure members of a democratic society, women in particular, and all walks of life receive a fair treatment in an environment of libertarian and equalitarian social and political reforms.


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