Turkey jails 10 HDP deputies, 37 Kurdish mayors to date

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Protesters shout slogans and hold placards reading "We will not give up" on November 20, 2016, during a demonstration in Istanbul. Thousands of opposition protesters demonstrated in Istanbul on November 20 against a crackdown on Turkey's main pro-Kurdish party MPs and municipal chiefs in the southeast. At least 5,000 people, mainly supporters of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) and the secular Republican People's Party (CHP), gathered on the Asian side of Istanbul. / AFP PHOTO / YASIN AKGUL

The Turkish government has arrested a total of 10 deputies from the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) in the past couple of weeks and has seized the administration of 28 municipalities, jailing 37 Kurdish mayors in eastern Turkey.

On Nov. 4, Turkish courts arrested nine HDP deputies including the party’s co-chairs, who were detained in the early hours of the same day following police raids on their homes.

HDP Co-chairs Selahattin Demirtaş and Figen Yüksekdağ and deputies İdris Baluken, Leyla Birlik, Nursel Aydoğan, Selma Irmak, Ferhat Encü and Gülser Yıldırım were arrested on Nov. 4.

Three days after the arrest of the nine HDP deputies, Turkish police this time detained HDP deputy Nihat Akdoğan in the southeastern province of Hakkari. Akdoğan was later arrested by a Turkish court and jailed pending trial.

Moreover, the Turkish government has so far seized the administration of 28 municipalities in the country’s eastern provinces that have alleged links to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). Turkish courts have appointed government-backed trustees to Kurdish municipalities and arrested a total of 37 Kurdish mayors who were democratically elected in 2014.

(Turkey Purge)

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