Demirtaş’s lawyers apply for parole after latest court ruling

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A woman holds pictures of former leader of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party HDP Selahattin Demirtas, in jail for a year and a half, and HDP candidate for the upcoming presidential election, during a rally on May 4, 2018 in Besiktas district of Istanbul. Turkey's pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) launched its campaign for June 24 elections, as other opposition parties indicated they were set to join forces in an unprecedented alliance against incumbent president. / AFP PHOTO / Yasin AKGUL

Lawyers for jailed Kurdish politician Selahattin Demirtaş have applied for parole for a prior conviction that prevented Demirtaş from leaving prison after an Ankara court rejected a prosecutor’s appeal against last Monday’s ruling to release Demirtaş in another trial, the Mezopotamya news agency reported.

The lawyers made the application on Tuesday evening at the İstanbul 26th High Criminal Court after they met with Demirtaş in Edirne Prison, where he has been jailed since November 2016.

Last Monday judges unanimously decided in favor of Demirtaş’s release despite a demand by the prosecutor for the continuation of his detention. However, he was not allowed to leave prison due to a sentence of four years, eight months previously handed down to him for disseminating terrorist propaganda.

Demirtaş, the former co-chair of the Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), was detained on charges of terrorism in November 2016 along with Figen Yüksekdağ, the other co-chair of the party.

On Sept. 18 the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) will hear a case against Turkey upon the application of Demirtaş’s lawyers.

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