Potential HDP ban sparks disappointment among Turkey's Kurds – DW

Local politicians and citizens in Turkey’s Kurdish majority southeastern Diyarbakır province are greatly disappointed with the judiciary's decision to push for a ban on the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), German broadcaster Deutsche Welle reported on Saturday.

Very few in Diyarbakır - the HDP’s greatest stronghold - were surprised at the proposition of political banishment for the pro-Kurdish party, DW said, pointing to a weeks-long discourse by the ruling alliance signalling the move amid a years-long crackdown on the HDP.

Turkey’s top public prosecutor earlier this week demanded the dissolution of the left-wing opposition HDP, citing alleged links to outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), an armed group that has been at war in Turkey for Kurdish self rule for almost four decades. 

The move followed the expulsion of HDP politician and human rights activist Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu from parliament on the same day.

According to Democracy and Progress Party (DEVA) chairman for Diyarbakir province, Cihan Ülsen, the HDP has already been under a de facto ban for almost two years.

The Turkish government has removed from office most of the mayors and city councils in the majority of 65 provinces the HDP carried in the election, DW recalled, replacing them with government appointed officials.

The latest move to ban the HDP, according to opposition Future Party Diyarbakir chair Ayden Altaç, highlights the lack of independence of the judiciary.

"The fact that the judiciary obviously followed orders from the government and filed the suit shows that the prosecution is motivated by politics, not justice," Altaç said.

Local leader of the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), Gönül Özel, echoes the support given to the HDP by numerous opposition parties.

We're talking about the will of 6 million people who voted for the HDP to represent them in parliament [in the last election]. We are dealing with a dictatorial regime here. This is pure suppression," Özel told DW.

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