Turkey: Kurdish leaders summoned to testify

HDP's co-chair addressing more than one hundred thousand supporters in coastal city of Izmir in western Anatolia during an election rally in 2015

ANKARA (ANF) – Following the recent constitutional amendment for the removal of immunities of members of the parliament, HDP members continue to be a target of the Turkish judiciary under the Islamist AKP party.

HDP (Peoples’ Democratic Party) co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş has been summoned to testify within the scope of an investigation run by Mersin Public Prosecutor’s Office. Demirtaş has been asked to give his testimony today.

The summary of proceedings that is taken as basis of the investigation is related with the speech Demirtaş made in an event organized by HDP branch in Mersin’s Akdeniz district on February 27th. Demirtaş is accused of “openly humiliating the military or police organisation of the state” with his remarks on the siege and destruction in the Kurdish region and the “basements of savagery” in Şırnak’s Cizre district where more than 150 people were savagely massacred.

HDP Ağrı MPs Dirayet Taşdemir and Bedran Öztürk were also summoned to prosecutor’s office to testify yesterday. In the same way, HDP deputies Ahmet Yıldırım, Burcu Çelik Özkan and Ayhan Bilgen were called in to give their statements last week.

HDP (Peoples’ Democratic Party) co-chair Figen Yüksekdağ has also been summoned to Ankara Public Prosecutor’s Office to testify within the scope of an investigation launched by Kayseri Public Prosecutor’s Office. She is accused of “slandering a public official”.

Kurdish leaders and MPs said that the would not go to court to testify.