Solidarity Forum for Tur Abdin urges action to combat shepherd violations in villages of Mount Izla

TUR ABDIN — In a concerted effort to address the ongoing challenges faced by the Syriac (Aramean–Assyrian–Chaldean) communities residing in the villages of Mount Izla in the historic Tur Abdin region in what is now southeastern Turkey, the Solidarity Forum for Tur Abdin sent a letter to the Mayor of Midyat, the Mayor of Nusaybin, and the Governor of Mardin highlighting its concerns over repeated property violations perpetrated by nomadic shepherds, particularly Roma shepherds, who own extensive flocks.

The Solidarity Forum, comprising esteemed institutions such as the Assyrian Democratic Organization, the Federation of Tur Abdin Village Development Clubs, the European Syriac Union, the Assyrian Union in Central Europe and Germany, the Kano Syriac Foundation, the German Syriac Union, and the Federation of Tur Abdin Clubs in Sweden, called upon local authorities to take decisive measures to prevent further encroachments.

The joint letter underscored the recurrent nature of these incursions, emphasizing the urgent need to halt the infiltration of thousands of herd animals into the lands of the villages of Mount Izla. The Solidarity Forum urged a collaborative effort between relevant authorities and local communities to safeguard the interests and well-being of the affected villages.

Furthermore, the Tur Abdin Solidarity Forum issued a warning to the mukhtars in the villages of Mount Izla, cautioning against selling their pastures. Specifically addressing the mayors of Beth Dibba, Badbah, Harbatho, Arbo, Kafnas, and Daywankeh, the Solidarity Forum went so far as to threaten to pursue legal action against anyone subverting the land rights of the Syriac (Aramean–Assyrian–Chaldean) people in Mount Izla.