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Kurdish Infant Denied Medical Treatment Because of His Name

3-months-old Welat Is Not Being Admitted to the Hospital

In Diyarbakır the three-month-old baby Welat cannot take advantage of medical services because he cannot receive an identity card in order to receive services, due to the first initial of his name, "W", which is in the banned Kurdish alphabet.

The couple, Muhsin and Laima Başer, who reside in Diyarbakır, wanted to name their newborn baby "Welat", which means "Homeland". However the Diyarbakır Registration Department refused the name because the letter "W" does not exist in the Turkish alphabet. Based on the Başer couple's legal demand to the IHD, IHD made a petition to the Interior Ministry to stop banning Kurdish names. After the petition submitted on 21 August 2008 received no response, the father Muhsin Başer said they sued the [Diyarbakır] registration department through the Diyarbakır Civil Court. The case is still ongoing.

Welat is not being admitted to the hospital

Saying that their child was not treated in the hospital because of the lack of his identity card, Başer pointed out that if he [Welat] were treated, a large amount of money would be asked from him. Mentioning that it is discrimination not to have his son's treatment due to a lack of an identity card, Başer said: "For this reason we are being wronged by this matter. I have insurance from my workplace, however they are not taking care of my child because he doesn't have an identity card. This is unlawful." For resolving the problem, Başer said he applied to Diyarbakır Social Security Department and he asked for a temporary health card. Başer said, "In my application to the Social Security Department I asked for a temporary health card to be issued and the health costs to be compensated by them. However, I received a negative response."

"Kurdish is banned for the Kurds"

Pointing out the government's hypocrisy, Başer underscored that Kurdish was free for PM Erdoğan whereas it is banned for Kurds. Condemning with hatred the government's approach, Başer said that this is a contradiction that the government, on the one hand, says it freed Kurdish; on the other hand, it has such restrictions [on Kurdish]. Pointing out that the government wants to create its own Kurds through TRT 6, Başer said,"This action is a great injustice, hypocrisy, and contradiction. It is free for the state but is banned for us, the Kurds. I will do whatever I can in order to remove this unlawfulness."

Social Security Department: There is nothing we can do

The Social Security Department, which had a negative response to Başer's application, mentioned that without having a Turkish Republic identity number (similar to a social security number in the US), there is nothing much that they can do. Saying that if the registration takes place the required processes will be done, the official said, "There is no action that our department can take. For this reason the demand that you made for obtaining a temporary health card is impossible to fulfill."

Source: Translated from Turkish by Rastî Weblog,

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