Diril family and 37 Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian organizations write open letter to Turkish Government to investigate disappearance and murder of Hurmüz and Shmuni Diril

ANKARA — An open letter signed by 37 Syriac (Aramean–Assyrian–Chaldean) institutions and organizations and sent to government offices and international media outlets called on the Turkish Ministry of Justice to conduct a transparent and public investigation into the kidnapping and suspected murder of Hurmüz (70) and Shmuni Diril (65).

Having disappeared under mysterious circumstances on 11 January 2020, the mutilated body of Shmuni was found by one of her sons on 20 March in a stream near their village of Mahre. Her body had been covered by snowfall and wasn’t visible during previous searches. The state of her body indicated she had been dead for some time.

Although fearing the worst, the eleven Diril children continue to search for their father and the perpetrator(s) of the crime.

There is much consternation and anger among the Diril children about the way in which Turkish authorities have attached little importance to the couple’s disappearance and their unwillingness to thoroughly investigate the matter. “We were never taken seriously,” said one of the Diril sisters last year, shortly after the disappearance.

Now, member of Turkish Parliament for the opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) MP Hakki Saruhan Oluç conveyed the demands of the Diril family and the Chaldean–Syriac–Assyrian institutions and organizations to the government.

“The Diril family, with 37 Syriac, Assyrian, and Chaldean organizations issued an open letter calling for an investigation into the fate of Hurmüz Diril, who was kidnapped over a year ago in Şırnak,” said Oluç in parliament on Wednesday.

“This message is very important and was sent to Turkish and international organizations,” he added. “Members of the bereaved family and their friends want to know the truth, but so far, no developments have been recorded in this regard, as the investigations were conducted in complete secrecy.”

“We, from this platform, transmit to you the call of these organizations and institutions.”

The letter was issued based on the initiative of both the European Syriac Union (ESU) and the Diril family and has been published by several media outlets, including Dawar Newspaper, Artı Gerçek, Mesopotamia, and Furat News Agency.