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Turkish police arrest mayor of pro-Kurdish district in Van province

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Zilan Aldatmaz, co-mayor of the Saray district of eastern Van province, was arrested on Friday on charges of membership in a terrorist organization, Turkish media reported.

Pro-Kurdish Democratic Regions Party (DBP) member Aldatmaz was detained on Sept. 21 as part of an investigation into the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and its umbrella organization, the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK).

Saray municipal employee Ömer Faruk Kandeğer was also arrested along with Aldatmaz on terrorism charges on Friday. Both Aldatmaz and Kandeğer were jailed in Van.

In early September Turkey’s Interior Ministry in a controversial move appointed trustees to 28 local municipalities, 24 of which were allegedly linked to the PKK, while the other four were allegedly connected to the faith-based Gülen movement.


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