Sign In / Up

Add contribution as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Comment as a guest

Your email will not be displayed publicly
Benefit of signing in/signing up to personalize comment

Login

Not a member Register   Forgot Password
or connect using
 

Email

 

Rudaw

Culture & Art

‘Dil Leyla’ film tells story of Kurdish politician’s return to Turkey and arrest

By Rudaw 17/7/2017
Leyla Imret speaks at a political rally in Kurdish areas of Turkey. Photo: Dil Leyla trailer
Leyla Imret speaks at a political rally in Kurdish areas of Turkey. Photo: Dil Leyla trailer
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region — The story of a Kurdish woman born in Turkey who immigrated to Germany and then returned to her homeland as a politician only to be arrested has been made into a documentary.
 
“I know it is difficult to be in Kurdish politics in Turkey,” Leyla Imret says in the film that is now being shown in cinemas across Germany. “That I can always be summoned on a warrant. You can be shot as a politician here.”
 
Asli Ozarslan’s film, titled ‘Dil Leyla’ — a reference in Kurdish to being her father’s heart — tells the story of the then 27-year-old Kurdish woman who returned to her hometown of Cizre in southeastern Turkey in spring 2014.
 
“Actually, I just wanted to run for town council,” the subject of the film, Imret told the German Press Agency (DPA). “But then I just said: I will run for mayor.”
 
Imret returned to her Kurdish home city and joined the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP). She and Kadir Konur ran as co-candidates for mayor, winning 83 percent of the vote.
 
Imret and Konur were removed from office on charges of support and propaganda for the banned Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) — charges that led to dozens of pro-Kurdish mayors and administrators being replaced by appointed trustees.
 
After being arrested multiple times, the film’s trailer ends with Leyla crying in a court facing a prison sentence of up to 40 years.
 
She immigrated to Germany in 1996 after the death of her father, who Leyla has told Voice of America was killed by Turkish security forces during PKK and Turkish security forces’ clashes.
 
Imret recalled to VOA that, when she was a child, her father would tell her mother the girl “should study in Europe and come back here and serve her own people.”
 
"Twenty-five years ago, he uttered these words and they all came true," Imret says. "My father became a martyr and we had to leave Cizre and I ended up in Germany, none of which I ever imagined could happen.”
 
Turkey and the PKK have been locked in a three-decade conflict in which some 40,000 people have been killed. The conflict re-ignited in late July 2015 after peace talks stalled.

 


Be Part of Your Rudaw!

Share your stories, photos and videos with Rudaw, and quite possibly the world.

What You Say

eclipeseden | 9/25/2017 11:57:23 AM
Oil is the curse of Middle East!!! Best thing Turkey and other oppressive countries in Middle East is to do for newly Kurdistan is to block...
Sherwani | 9/25/2017 3:25:23 PM
Turkey will forever discourage the Kurds from gaining independency, however, at some points in life, Enough is ENOUGH and we (Us Kurds) will take our...
Turkey's Erdogan threatens to shut off oil pipeline, to close border
| 14 hours ago | (3)
Bob | 9/25/2017 3:14:52 PM
Never trust Turks, much less Erdogan. NEVER.
Sully | 9/25/2017 3:23:17 PM
The fascist government of Turkey and its dispicable behavior only proves how anti democratic and totalitarian it is! Turkeys unfounded fear and...
Turkey halts Rudaw broadcast on Turksat satellites
| 10 hours ago | (2)
Penina Sarah | 9/25/2017 3:14:37 PM
I do not dislike these comments. I agree with them. The history of western and US betrayal of Kurdish interests is disgraceful with the exception...
Penina Sarah | 9/25/2017 3:14:38 PM
I do not dislike these comments. I agree with them. The history of western and US betrayal of Kurdish interests is disgraceful with the exception...
US opposes elections in Syria's Kurdish enclaves
| 19/9/2017 | (9)
Jay | 9/25/2017 11:38:36 AM
Haidar is a barking dog, this man is so incompetent that he can not run a school, is that really you Haidar or some one is pushing you.
Murf | 9/25/2017 2:36:50 PM
Well it looks like the Shia are going to make this as ugly as possible. You would think after getting kick hard in 4 separate wars they would have...
Baghdad demands control over borders, oil on eve of referendum
| yesterday at 10:10 | (13)

Elsewhere on Rudaw

Counting begins after high voter turnout in Kurdistan referendum 5 hours ago | (17)

Counting begins after high voter turnout in Kurdistan referendum

72.16 percent voter turnout more
In-Pictures: High turn out for independence referendum in Kirkuk 9 hours ago |

In-Pictures: High turn out for independence referendum in Kirkuk

78.7 percent voted in Monday's referendum in more
0.547 seconds