Nineteen children in Turkey have lost their lives due to the explosion of ammunition that they found in the past two years, as 36 people have been injured for the same reasons.
Two separate incidents in Turkey’s southeastern province of Hakkari’s Yüksekova district have raised concerns over unexploded ordnance that remains from military operations carried out in the conflict-affected Kurdish-dominated provinces during the curfew period.
On March 10, Berat Oktay, a 10-year-old child living with his family in Güngör Street in Yüksekova, lost his life due to the explosion of military ordnance. The very next day, ammunition founded by 19-year-old İbrahim Akdağ in the garden of his house exploded and seriously injured Akdağ. He is still being treated in the hospital he was taken.
In addition to Yüksekova, the Şemdinli district of Hakkari; the districts of Cizre, İdil and Silopi and the city center of the southeastern province Şırnak, the districts of Sur, Lice and Silvan in the southeastern province Diyarbakır, the districts of Nusaybin and Dargeçit of the southeastern province of Mardin have also encountered similar problems related to unexploded ordnance.
According to accessible data, 19 children have lost their lives due to explosions of military ammunition in the past two years, as 36 people were severely injured for the same reason.
Especially children have become victims of these explosions, because authorities do not carry out unexploded ammunition clearance operations in these regions after military campaigns, and children play with ordnances they find due to their curiosity.
Unexploded ordnance and military ammunition found by children who can easily enter excavation areas where unexploded ammunition is present in piles of debris belonging to building demolished in conflict, open the way to death and fatal injuries in Turkey’s Southeastern Anatolia.