A report prepared by the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) on the occasion of the Dec.10, Human Rights Day, has revealed that at least 2,000 members of the HDP have been detained in the first 11 months of 2018, 500 of whomhave been sent to jail, the Artıgerçek news website reported on Tuesday.
The HDP has been one of the main targets of Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) since a coup attempt in July 2016, following which the government launched a massive crackdown on its opponents under the pretext of an anti-coup fight.
According to the HDP report, 16 former party deputies including the party’s former co-chairpersons Selahattin Demirtaş and Figen Yüksekdağ as well as one current deputy are in jail.
HDP Hakkari deputy Leyla Güven was not released from jail although a court ruled for her release five days after her election to parliament on June 24 because she had gained immunity from prosecution with her win.
In addition, there are 12 former HDP deputies who are currently not yet in jail but have been handed jail sentences.
Since the enactment of a law in September 2016 that granted the right to the Interior Ministry to remove mayors and municipal council members from their posts, 71 pro-Kurdish Democratic Regions Party (DBP) co-mayors have been arrested, while trustees have been appointed to 94 DBP municipalities, according to the report.
The controversial law was moved forward by the AKP government during a state of emergency it declared in the aftermath of the coup attempt in the country.