Turkey’s parliament speaker bans “hurtful” words

The speaker of Turkey’s parliament routinely rejects parliamentary proposals from the majority-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) on the basis of their “crude” and “hurtful” language, the Cumhuriyet newspaper said.

İsmail Kahraman, a member of the governing Justice and Development Party (AKP) who was recently re-elected as speaker, had banned the following words in this parliamentary session alone, the newspaper said:

economic blockade, massacre, war, assimilation, mugging, repressively, torture, gender-based violence, murder, Kurdish provinces, Kurdistan, the state’s mentality, lynching, forced migration, mass killing and pogrom…

Cumhuriyet quoted HDP member of parliament Meral Danış Beştaş as saying she had asked for a full list of banned words, but that Kahraman had refused to answer.

The true reason for the bans, she said, was that the speaker did not want any mention of rights violations, torture or corruption on the house’s agenda.