Close up Kurdistan

Yüksel Yavuz

In Close up Kurdistan, documentary maker Yüksel Yavuz provides a personal account of the Turkey-Kurdistan conflict. Yavuz seeks out old friends and activists in Europe, Turkey and Northern Iraq. He shows how the lack of willingness to compromise from both the Turkish side and the Kurdish side ultimately leads to an inconceivable war.

In the documentary Yüksel Yavuz (Karakocan, Turkey, 1964) draws a parallel between his own experience as an immigrant in Germany and the present state of affairs in the Turkish-Kurdish conflict. He embarks on a personal journey from Hamburg to the north of Iraq, via Stockholm and Turkey. He meets his parents and old friends on the way. In some cases, these old friends have become guerrillas, fighting in the mountains against old acquaintances, who - because of conscription laws - have become a part of the Turkish army. Others have fled the country. Yet others remain in their villages where, due to their dedication to their own culture, they have become the victims of hard repression. Yavuz also interviews Ismail Besikçi, an intellectual who served an eighteen-year prison sentence because of his research into Kurdish culture, and Abdulkadir Algan, who led the fight against the Kurdish resistance.

The film is an attempt to bring Turks and Kurds closer together. Yavuz shows how the lack of willingness to compromise on both sides ultimately leads to an inconceivable war. As a result, the social and cultural diversity of Turkey, according to Yavuz, is the most significant victim of this war.


Yüksel Yavuz
Mehmet Aktas
Country of production
104 minutes
Spoken language
Production company
Mitos Film
World Sales
Mitos Film