Kurdish teachers to go on hunger strike
MARDİN (DİHA) - Graduates from the Kurdology Institute of Artuklu University in Mardin have started hunger strike to protest against the nonfulfilment of appointments for Kurdish teachers.
The unemployed graduates cannot practice the teaching profession as they have yet to be assigned by the Ministry of National Education to public service, a fate shared by tens of thousands of unassigned teachers across the country. The group announced in a statement to the press that they have gone on alternate hunger strike. Speaking on behalf of the group, Mutlu Can recalled that the Kurdish people are struggling for dozens of years to protect their mother tongue, a basic fact of their existence.
Can stressed that they wanted the mother tongue issue to remain on the agenda in all areas of life, noting that they didn't see the problem of unassigned teachers separate from the mother tongue question. Can said they have started hunger strike to protest against the nonfulfilment of promises given by government officials and Recep Tayyip Erdoğan who announced in 2012 that Kurdish would be included in the program of the Ministry of National Education.
“We are determined. Our mother tongue is our red line”, Can said and added that they as Kurdish teachers would be on alternate hunger strike at a tent at Karayolları park in Artuklu district of Mardin until their assignment is implemented. Tens of thousands of unemployed teachers are waiting to be assigned to public service due to the restriction on the number of assignment quotas depending on departments. Teachers are being forced to be temporary substitute teachers, working under severer conditions and being paid much less than permanent teachers.
The number of unassigned teachers has remarkably increased in recent years as it is mainly “religious culture and moral knowledge” teachers who are being provided with the highest rate of assignments.