Şırnak Province

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Şırnak Province

Şırnak ili
Damlabaşı, Şırnak Province
Sirnak in Turkey.svg
Location of Şırnak Province in Turkey
Country Turkey
Region Southeast Anatolia
Subregion Mardin
   Electoral district Şırnak
  GovernorAli Hamza Pehlivan
  Total7,172 km2 (2,769 sq mi)
 (2018) [1]
  Density73/km2 (190/sq mi)
Area code(s) 0486 [2]
Vehicle registration 73

Şırnak Province (Turkish : Şırnak ili, Kurdish : Parêzgeha Şirnexê [3] ) is a province of Turkey in the Southeastern Anatolia Region. Şırnak Province was created in 1990, with areas that were formerly part of the Siirt and Mardin Provinces. It borders both Kurdistan Region of Iraq and Syria. The current Governor of the province is Ali Hamza Pehlivan. [4] As of 2013, the province had an estimated population of 475,255 people. [5]


Considered part of Turkish Kurdistan, [6] the province has a Kurdish majority. [7]


Midin (village), Tur Abdin Midin.jpg
Midin (village), Tur Abdin

Şırnak Province has some mountainous regions in the west and the south, but the majority of the province consists of plateaus, resulting from the many rivers that cross it. These include the Tigris (and its tributaries Hezil and Kızılsu) and Çağlayan. The most important mountains are Mount Cudi (2089 m), [8] Mount Gabar, Mount Namaz and Mount Altın.


Şırnak province is divided into seven districts (capital district in bold): [5]



In order to Turkify the local population, [9] in June 1927, Law 1164 was passed, [10] which allowed the creation of Inspectorates-General (Umumi Müffetişlik, UM). [11] The province was included in the First Inspectorate General (Turkish : Birinci Umumi Müfettişlik), which covered the provinces of Hakkâri, Siirt, Van, Mardin, Şırnak Bitlis, Sanlıurfa, Elaziğ, and Diyarbakır. [12] The First Inspectorate General was established in January 1928 and had its headquarters in Diyarbakır. [13] The UM was governed by an Inspector General, who governed with a wide-ranging authority over civilian, juridical and military matters. [11] In 1948 the policy of governing the province within the Inspectorate General was abandoned and the administration was not re-employed again, [11] but the office of the Inspector General was only dissolved in 1952 during the government of the Democrat Party. [14]

Kurdish-Turkish conflict

Şırnak has been a focal point in the ongoing Kurdish-Turkish conflict, which began in 1984. [15] From its creation in 1990 to 2002, Şırnak Province was part of the OHAL (state of emergency) region which was declared to counter the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and governed by a supergovernor, who was given additional powers than a normal Turkish provincial governor, including the power to relocate and resettle whole settlements. [16] In December 1990, the supergovernor and the provincial governors in the OHAL region received absolute immunity from prosecution in connection with decisions they made under Decree No. 430. [17]

Turkish Forces' operation, 1992

On 18 August 1992 Turkish forces attacked the city, killing 54 people, mostly children and women. For three days homes were burned, livestock were killed, and people were killed. 20,000 out of 25,000 residents fled the city, Amnesty International reported. [18] [19]

During the operation, a curfew was imposed in the town and when it finally ended, the whole city was in ruins.

While the town was under bombardment, there was no way to get an account of what was happening in the region as journalists were prevented from entering the city centre which was completely burned down by the security forces. Şırnak was under fire for three days and tanks and cannons were used to hit buildings occupied by civilians. [20]

On 26 August 1992, Amnesty International sent requests to then Prime Minister, Süleyman Demirel, Interior Minister İsmet Sezgin, Emergency Legislation Governor Ünal Erkan and Şırnak province governor Mustafa Mala, to immediately initiate an independent and impartial inquiry into the events, to ensure no-one was mistreated in police custody and to make their results public. [21]

2015-2016 Clashes

The 2015–16 Şırnak clashes took place in Şırnak City, Cizre, Idil and Silopi. On 14 March 2016 a curfew was declared in Şırnak province. This marked the start of an 80 day long operation against Kurdish militant in the province. The curfew remained in place for 9 months. [22] 2,044 buildings were destroyed during the military operation. [23]

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Siirt Province Province of Turkey

Siirt Province, is a province of Turkey, located in the southeast. The province borders Bitlis to the north, Batman to the west, Mardin to the southwest, Şırnak to the south, and Van to the east. It has an area of 5,406 km² and a total population of 300,695. The provincial capital is the city of Siirt. The province is considered part of Turkish Kurdistan and has a Kurdish majority. The current Governor of the Siirt province is Ali Fuat Atik.

Şırnak Municipality in Turkey

Şırnak is a town in southeastern Turkey. It is the capital of Şırnak Province, a new province that split from the Mardin and Siirt provinces. The Habur border gate with Iraq which is one of Turkey's main links to Arab countries is also on Şırnak.

İdil Place in Şırnak, Turkey

İdil is a city and district in Şırnak Province in southeastern Turkey. It is located in the historical region of Tur Abdin.

Silopi Place in Şırnak, Turkey

Silopi is a city and district of Şırnak Province in Turkey's Southeastern Anatolia Region, close to the borders of Iraq and Syria. The majority of its people are of ethnic Kurds. The district, composed of Silopi center, three townships with their own municipalities, and 23 villages, has an urban population of 73,400. The mayor Adalet Fidan of the HDP, who was elected in 2019, was deposed the same year and replaced by the sub-governor (kaymakam) Sezer Işiktaş as a "state-appointed caretaker".

Cizre City in Şırnak, Turkey

Cizre is a city and district in Şırnak Province in Southeastern Anatolia Region of Turkey. It is located on the river Tigris by the Syria–Turkey border and close to the Iraq–Turkey border. Cizre is in the historical region of Upper Mesopotamia and the cultural region of Turkish Kurdistan.

Inspectorates-General or General Inspectorates was a regional governorship whose authorities prevailed over civilian, military and judicial institutions under their domain of the direct command of Mustafa Kemal in order to establishing authoritarian rule and to consolidate the authority in the process of Turkification of religious and ethnic minorities.

OHAL Regional Governorship under State of Emergency in Turkey

The OHAL region was a "super-region" created in Turkey under state of emergency legislation, as part of its approach to the Kurdish–Turkish conflict. From 1994 onwards the scope of the OHAL super-region was gradually narrowed, with provinces being downgraded to "neighbouring province" and then removed from OHAL altogether. The state of emergency was extended 46 times, for four months each time. OHAL was finally discontinued on 30 November 2002.

In late July 2015, the third phase of the Kurdish–Turkish conflict between various Kurdish insurgent groups and the Turkish government erupted, following a failed two and a half year-long peace process aimed at resolving the long-running conflict.

During the Kurdish–Turkish conflict (2015–present), in September Turkish security forces launched an operation in Cizre. The Turkish security forces sealed off the city and placed a curfew for eight days, from September 4–11. The town had limited access to water and food and many of the injured were prohibited to receive professional medical treatment. The Council of Europe raised concerns about "disproportionate use of force by security forces against civilians." Leyla İmret, the mayor of Cizre at the time, was forcefully removed from her post under charges of supporting terrorism.

Şırnak clashes (2015–2016) Clashes during the Turkish-Kurdish conflict

The 2015–2016 Şırnak clashes were a series of armed clashes in the southeastern Şırnak province, between Turkish government forces and Kurdish armed groups, as part of the Turkish–Kurdish conflict.

The First Inspectorate-General refers to a former regional administrative area in Turkey. The First Inspectorate-General span over the provinces Hakkari, Siirt, Şırnak, Mardin, Şanlıurfa, Bitlis, Elazığ and Van.


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  2. Area codes page of Turkish Telecom website (in Turkish)
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  18. amnesty.org
  20. nytimes
  21. "AI Index: EUR 44/85/92" (PDF). Amnesty International . Retrieved 15 February 2020.
  22. "Turkey's Şırnak Now Nothing But Rubble". Al-Monitor. December 2, 2016. Retrieved December 31, 2016.
  23. "Şırnak'ta hasar tespiti yappıldı!..2 bin 44 ev yıkıldı". dogan haber ajansi (in Turkish). November 16, 2016. Retrieved December 31, 2016.

Coordinates: 37°26′58″N42°34′28″E / 37.44944°N 42.57444°E / 37.44944; 42.57444