We will re-build our destroyed cities and we will hold accountable those responsible of the disaster!

Hatay Crisis Coordination — Press Release – February 27, 2023

First of all, we express our condolences to the relatives of all those who lost their lives in the earthquake disaster that shook our country deeply, and we promise that we will fight with all of our strength so that those responsible at all levels will be held accountable before the judiciary. We will succeed in directing the struggle for life after the earthquake, which we are carrying out in order to enlarge the struggle at all levels against its real interlocutors, together with all our wounded who are fighting for their lives in hospitals, and those who have lost their homes and shelters, and to protect the precious memory of our losses, some of which have not yet been found.

Unfortunately, HATAY has become a city that need not be repaired but “re-established”, especially in Antakya, Defne, Samandağ and Kırıkhan. What collapsed is not just the hypocrisy of the politics of profit and plunder, but the collapse of the attitudes of neglect, discrimination, ignoring and not valuing that have accumulated for decades, in concrete blocks, on our people.

In the process we live in, feeling anger and hatred towards immigrants and different identities, images of battering up to lynching by alleged looters, reports of torture and death coming from the gendarmerie station are unacceptable.

Today, we do not want to convey once again the deficiencies, mistakes and incompetence during the rescue operations, the rescue teams whose videos have been shown at all levels for the last 15 days, and whose cries have been reflected, and who did not arrive. We came together to share with the public and our valuable press our urgent demands that need to be met and those we cannot allow to be delayed, while exposing the political mentality of the irresponsible government that by exploiting the humane, conscientious and religious values of the society, calls a “destiny plan” such a massacre that caused us to lose almost in 100 seconds in one night the loss that could have been suffered in a major war, legitimizes uncontrolled and illegal buildings with  zoning amnesties, asks for money after every disaster, tries to cover up the disaster with threats and declares a state of emergency on the pretext of preventing looting events; and revealing the public enmity that the state mind and bureaucracy carry in their genes. 

Our urgent demands that we call to be met immediately and without delay on behalf of those who sign this statement and all the labor organizations, initiatives, chambers, associations, foundations, working groups, unions, political parties, headmen and all forces that will join later, for all the lives damaged by the 6 February earthquake in our country, for our city HATAY, are as follows:

  1. First of all, the “shelter problem” of all the peoples of HATAY who are in need, whose houses were destroyed and heavily damaged, should be resolved by taking into account the unique character of the city, in a way that the infrastructure problems are resolved, and taking into account the magnitude of the devastating effect of the earthquake. Tent neighborhoods should be established instead of tent cities for thousands of people. In the long term, container cities should be created in neighborhoods.
  2. Nutrition, clothing, health and education needs of our peoples must be solved in a way that will not create any deficiencies. Disabled, chronic patient etc. disadvantaged groups should not be victimized in any way.
  3. A regular and continuous “cash” support above the “minimum wage” should be provided to all our peoples who suffered from the earthquake. 
  4. In the reconstruction of the city of Hatay, the “historical and cultural” texture of the city should be respected, the return of the people who had to leave the city should be encouraged, and the city should not be handed over to construction profit in any way.
  5. With the awareness that the deaths of tens of thousands of lives are not caused by disaster, fate or earthquake, all bureaucratic and political officials, old and new, who hold the power to govern the country and have the authority to make all kinds of decisions, should be held accountable.
  6. The transfer of earthquake victims to other cities should be removed from the supervision of institutions based on sect-mafia relations, and the housing problem in the cities that receive the victims should not be fixed via the evacuation of student dormitories, but through the use of hotels, hostels, residences and public buildings that property owners hold for profit and through the buildings that are open to public but has been given by the government to their adherent groups. 
  7. The choices for the location of the housing constructions for the earthquake victims should not be rushed and forest, pasture, agricultural areas etc should not be recklessly plundered while the wealth of the companies close to the government gain wealth. 

All of this is a declaration that we will not only have these “demands” but also be determined defenders of and fight for these issues. Our call to the peoples is that we must raise the struggle and take care of these lands and our lives.

Hatay Coordination Center



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