Turkey: opposition party hdp about to be banned?

turkey: opposition party hdp about to be banned?

The hunt for opposition members continues throughout the country with undisguised ferocity

AKP-MHP coalition wants to ban opposition party HDP. Already at the end of January, reports pointed in this direction. In recent days, Turkish media have reported signs that Erdogan and MHP leader Bahceli are on course to ban the HDP.

After hundreds of HDP members were arrested in one day alone, the Turkish government plans to revoke the parliamentary immunity of 28 of the 56 HDP parliamentarians. The hunt for opposition members continues throughout the country with undisguised ferocity. The Kurdish population is particularly affected. Many Turkish citizens of Kurdish origin are seeking protection in Europe, especially in Germany. But many Kurdish persecutees are denied protection.

HDP ban means the end for the democratic opposition

Because of the 10% hurdle in Turkey, only a few parties make it into parliament. This has been the case since the military coup, in order to encourage the participation of smaller or. Prevent new currents in parliamentary politics. People prefer to keep to themselves and distribute wages and posts accordingly. The Kemalist CHP, which is wrongly equated in the West with social democracy, is just as nationalist in orientation as the AKP, or rather, it is a nationalist party. Their new offshoots, and the far-right MHP.

When it comes to the conquest campaigns in northern Syria and northern Iraq, everyone stands in line cheering. Small differences can be found at most in the question of the Islamization of the republic and women’s rights. The CHP is also suspicious or even hostile toward ethnic and religious minorities, the LGBTI movement, and human rights or environmental activists.

On 24. February, 33 motions to lift parliamentary immunity were sent to parliament. 28 of them concern HDP parliamentarians, who will face the usual charges of supporting a terrorist organization, terrorist propaganda or insulting the president.

For example, Armenian HDP deputy Garo Paylan is under investigation for writing an earlier letter to former HDP leader Selahattin Demirtas with the words "Dear Selahattin Demirtas" had begun. Demirtas has been unjustly imprisoned for years, as the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) ruled again in December 2020. According to the verdict of the ECHR, the continued imprisonment is politically motivated. The ECHR ordered immediate release, which Turkey is not complying with, although the ruling is binding on Turkey as a member state of the Council of Europe.

Nine HDP deputies are to be stripped of their immunity because of the so-called "Kobane trial" are to be stripped of their immunity. The case concerns protests against Turkish support for the jihadist militia "Islamic State" (IS) on the occasion of their raid and subsequent siege of the northern Syrian town of Kobane in October 2014.

During the protests, security forces, paramilitary groups of village guards and supporters of the Islamist Turkish-Kurdish Hezbollah, fought pitched battles with the demonstrators in many cities. In the process, 50 people were reportedly killed and over 600 were injured. A total of 108 people have been charged in the trial. Most of them are HDP politicians and Kurdish civil society activists.

The Prosecutor General’s Office is asking for "Destruction of the unity of the state and the entirety of the country" Life imprisonment for the defendants. The Ministry of Defense and the Ministry of Labor, Social Affairs and the Interior "the Ministry of Labor, Social Affairs and Family, the Central Office of the Turkish Police, the Turkish Intelligence Service (MIT), the coalition parties AKP and MHP, the CHP and the Hizbullah-affiliated party Huda Par" (ANF News).

After the trial, which is to take place in mid-April, the banning of the HDP is likely to be on the agenda. In any case, this is currently being prepared by the Turkic media, which are all in the same direction. There is already speculation about how the HDP votes will be distributed among the other parties.

In the West, people are "seriously concerned"

The EU Spokesman for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Peter Stano, expressed in his usual manner "seriously concerned" about the developments in Turkey:

The European Union is seriously concerned about the ongoing pressure against the HDP and several of its members, which has recently manifested itself in the form of arrests, the replacement of elected mayors, apparently politically motivated court cases, and attempts to lift the parliamentary immunity of members of the Grand National Assembly.

Peter Stano, EU Spokesman on Foreign Affairs and Security Policy

The German government’s human rights representative, Barbel Kofler, expressed her concern about the rule of law in Turkey after speaking with HDP leaders Pervin Buldan and Mithat Sancar, as well as HDP’s political spokesperson Feleknas Uca and the former HDP mayor of Cizre and current HDP representative in Berlin, Leyla Imret:

Criminalization of government criticism is incompatible with EU values, defamation of non-violent protest as support for terror is cynical.

Barbel Kofler, Human Rights Commissioner of the German Government

However, this concern does not lead to any consequences on the part of the EU or Germany. For Erdogan and the Turkish government, none of this is relevant. On the contrary, because the Turkish government knows that it does not have to fear any sanctions and the arms deliveries to Turkey continue, this is tantamount to encouragement to continue on the repressive path against the opposition.

At the same time, the justifications for arbitrary arrests become more absurd every day: a graphic of a dove of peace on a broken rifle with the inscription "Man lives through peace" is now considered terror propaganda.

"Terror propaganda"

For example, a 35-year-old Kurdish man has been arrested for "terror propaganda" indicted for sharing on Facebook a letter from Trump to Erdogan, in which the former U.S. President urges Erdogan not to use any "Stupidity" to commit. He should rather accept the offer of negotiation made by SDF commander Mazlum. It is better to be remembered as correct and humane in this matter than as Damon. So even Trump did terror propaganda when his words led to the indictment of a Kurd in Turkey?

The doctor, HDP deputy and human rights activist omer Faruk Gergerlioglu must be imprisoned for, among other things.A. For expressing solidarity with the protests of teachers and students at Istanbul’s Bosphorus University over the appointment of an AKP-affiliated rector.

For the Turkish government, he is a red rag because he communicated weekly with victims of repressive policies via his Twitter channel and made injustice public: This includes the case of female students who were sexually harassed after being arrested in police custody. The case of former Turkish diplomats who were arrested on charges of membership in the organization of Islamic preacher Fethullah Gulen and who made allegations of torture against the police is also part of the case.

Gergerlioglu attended numerous political trials and made public the lack of evidence or the obviously constructed charges. In the indictment against him, however, he is accused of only one tweet from October 2016, which the court has ruled to be "propaganda for a terrorist organization" terrorist organization.

He had commented on a photo of a funeral in the Sudostanatolian province of Hakkari, where women were mourning in front of the coffins of two people: one coffin was draped in the Turkish flag, the other in the flag of the PKK. His comment: "Instead of the dead bodies of our children lying next to each other, they should be lying next to each other alive" – is, according to the Turkish judiciary, terror propaganda.

The whole procedure is illegal, because Gergerlioglu still enjoys immunity as a deputy of the HDP. Even the former AKP deputy Yeneroglu, who is well known in talk shows in Germany and who was Erdogan’s mouthpiece in Germany until recently, criticized that this verdict cannot be explained legally.

A journalist who photographed the murder of young Kurd, Kemal Kurkut in 2017 in Diyarbakir is to be sentenced to 20 years in prison. The young man was allegedly a suicide bomber. In fact, he was lightly clothed and was shot in the back by a police officer, killing him. The police guard was acquitted.

Herbert Schmalstieg, the former SPD mayor of Hanover for many years, is one of too few SPD representatives to speak clearly on a TV program: "Turkey is no longer a constitutional state…The mab is full." For the AKP government, there were only two categories of regime critics: either PKK terrorists or Gulenist terrorists. Germany could not accept this for long.

As long as there are human rights violations, oppression and systematic torture in Turkey, there must be no arms deliveries and there must be a suspension from NATO until there are clear changes. Schmalstieg recalled that the National Socialists had banned the Communist Party, the Social Democratic Party and the trade unions. He sees parallels to these practices in Turkey at present.

The European states could not duck out of sight, but had to take a clear stand. Strangely enough, the German government and the EU manage to do this in the case of Russia, Belarus and Myanmar, but in the case of Turkey the plaster seems to stick to their mouths particularly well.

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