‘Extrajudicial killings’ a 'disturbing term,' says Turkish parliamentary speaker

A parliamentary proposal to investigate the killings of 11 villagers in Turkey’s southeastern town of Diyarbakır in 1993 was overturned by the Speaker’s Office on the grounds that it included vulgar and hurtful words like “murders by unknown assailants” and “extrajudicial killings”, left-wing Artı Gerçek news website reported on Friday.

The proposal requested to form a parliamentary inquiry committee after the case related to the killings of 11 villagers was dismissed last month due to statute of limitations.

The proposal submitted to the Parliament’s Speaker’s Office by Abdullah Koç, a deputy of pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), said that Turkey witnessed for 40 years practices like extra-judicial killings, massacres, forced displacements, and torture as a result of the Kurdish conflict in the country.

Turkish Parliamentary Speaker and former Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım returned the proposal saying that it contained vulgar terms like “massacre”, “extra-judicial killings”, “murders by unknown assailants”, “enforced disappearances”, “enforced displacement”, and “systematic torture”.

According to Human Rights Watch, in the 1990s, during the armed conflict between the Turkish military and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in southeast Turkey, government military and security forces compelled hundreds of thousands of people to abandon their villages, and carried out enforced disappearances and killings of thousands of civilians.

Human Rights Watch also says that Turkey’s 20-year statute of limitations on the prosecution of unlawful killings in 1990s remains a major obstacle to justice.