Hizbullah (Turkey)

Country: Turkey
Details of Formation: The emergence of the group is disputed. While government and army officials claim that they founded the group in 1985, there is also evidence that the group was created by Islamists following the 1980 Coup d’etat. In the second scenario the group factionalised in 1987 with respect to whether to take up arms; the faction promoting armed struggle won and in 1993 the group adopted the name Hizbullah. In this scenario, there is evidence that the Turkish government aligned itself with the group at some point during the 1980s (Wikipedia).
Details of Termination: In 2000, Hizbullah kidnapped several businessmen in Istanbul; the army reacted with raids against Hizbullah (Wikipedia). Moreover, according to a news source, the army did not need the Hizbullah anymore as the PKK was defeated. Hizbullah’s military leader Edip Gümüş was killed alongside others and over 6000 members were arrested (Wikipedia). However, the group continued to be active, and killed regional police chiefs and police officers in 2001 (Amnesty 2002). That same year Hizbullah decided to end armed struggle and founded an association called “Solidarity with the Oppressed” (Wikipedia).
Purpose: The Turkish government and army cooperated with the Hizbullah against the Kurdistan Workers' Party PKK (Wikipedia). They allegedly profited from the factional fighting.
Organisation: According to one of the founding scenario, the Hizbullah was founded by and had close ties to the army; Arif Doğan, a retired colonel of the army claims to have created it, as well as JİTEM (Wikipedia). News sources report links to the Batman governor and Prime Minister Tansu Ciller, who had allowed the distribution or weapons to this group.
Weapons and Training: had C-4 explosives (Wikipedia), automatic rifles, rockets and hand grenades. News sources suggest that they received these weapons from the Turkish government. → the red part has not yet been added, as it depends on the coding decision for the date of formation, because the evidence suggesting this is before the current date of formation.
Size: There is no estimate on size during the PGM’s existence but after the Hizbullah ceased to be pro-government, for 2002/2003 it is estimated they had somewhere between a few hundred and 20,000 members.
Reason for Membership: According to the scenario in which the group was founded by Islamists, the group initially consisted of Islamists who wanted to develop Islamism in Turkey and believed that the democratic route would not be feasible (Wikipedia).
Treatment of Civilians: Over time, Hizbullah started to target not only the PKK but also people they considered to be with low morals (i.e. did not follow Islamic rules). They also killed journalists, mainly Kurds (Wikipedia).
Other Information: The Hizbullah is also known as Kurdish Hizbullah or with its alternative spelling “Hezbollah”. It is a Sunni Islamist militant organisation (Wikipedia) and is not related to the Lebanese group of the same name.
References: Amnesty International. 2002. “Fear for torture and ill-treatment/fear for safety.” AI Index: EUR
44/047/2002. 17 October.

Wikipedia. “Turkish Hezbollah”. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turkish_Hezbollah