2 more HDP deputies stripped of parliamentary status

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HDP deputies Selma Irmak and Osman Baydemir

The Turkish Parliament has stripped pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) deputies Osman Baydemir and Selma Irmak, who is currently in jail, of their parliamentary status due to the approval by an appeals court of sentences they had previously received.

So far, 11 HDP deputies have lost their parliamentary status for various reasons.

The number of HDP deputies in Parliament has dropped to 48 from the 59 the party won in the Nov. 1, 2015 general election.

A regional appeals court in Gaziantep in February approved a 10-year jail sentence given to Irmak on charges of “membership in a terrorist organization” and “disseminating the propaganda of a terror organization.” The same court also approved in March a 17-month jail sentence handed down to Baydemir on charges of insulting a police officer.

Nine HDP deputies are currently in prison: Selahattin Demirtaş, Figen Yüksekdağ, Irmak, Abdullah Zeydan, Gülser Yıldırım, Çağlar Demirel, Ferhat Encü, İdris Baluken and Burcu Çelik Özkan.

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