A delegation of European politicians was not allowed to pay a visit to the imprisoned co-chair of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), Selahattin Demirtaş, in Edirne on Monday.
The group, led by Sergei Staishev, president of the Party of European Socialists, the second-largest party in the European Parliament, comprised deputies from five countries.
The delegation was not allowed inside the Edirne F-type prison due to the lack of permission to enter. The European deputies were stopped by the gendarmerie on their way to the prison. HDP deputies Aysel Tuğluk, Hişyar Özsoy and Garo Paylan spoke to officials and were told that for any visit permission should be obtained from the Ministry of Justice and that no press release would be allowed in front of the prison, either.
Demirtaş, the leading Kurdish politician in Turkey who ran for the presidency in 2014, has been under arrest since Nov. 4 along with nine other HDP deputies.
Staishev told the media following the failure to visit Demirtaş that the arrests of the deputies are unacceptable.