Far-right Erdoğan ally takes aim at main opposition leader's immunity

Devlet Bahçeli, the leader of the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), called for proceedings to begin to strip the leader of Turkey’s main opposition party of his legal immunity for his party's relation with a pro-Kurdish party, pro-government NTV reported on Thursday.

Republican People's Party (CHP) and Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) have been seeking to strengthen ties after the opposition's momentous success in the March 31 local elections when the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has lost control of five of six biggest cities, including the capital of Ankara and the country's economic hub Istanbul.

"A commission was established to examine the CHP-HDP relations and to analyse and investigate the criminal acts and remarks of the CHP leader," Bahçeli said, referring to a commission formed within the MHP.

Recently, Kılıçdaroğlu criticised the decision to appoint officials who replace Kurdish mayors in Diyarbakır, Mardin and Van dismissed by the government and said a legislative regulation must be prepared for the Kurdish language to be recognised officially.

Bahçeli slammed the opposition leader's recent speeches, saying that Kılıçdaroğlu only had the courage to make such a statement under the cover of parliamentary immunity, and his legal immunity should be lifted.

The statement could be taken as a veiled threat given that Erdoğan’s AKP government has jailed dozens of deputies from the HDP and one CHP deputy after lifting their parliamentary immunity.

"This is political impoliteness. Those who want to touch Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu will be hit by the slap of democracy like the last elections," said Özgür Özel, the deputy head of the CHP in parliament.