Diyarbakır Governor Mustafa Toprak has said he used his power as governor to ban the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) and Democratic Society Congress (DTK) demonstration in Diyarbakır
on July 14, and called out BDP deputiesfor their part in the ensuing violence.
“What were you doing among those people whose faces were wrapped, in spite of the ban?” Toprak said, rhetorically addressing the deputies involved.
Toprak countered criticisms that have arisen against him and the incidents that erupted when the BDP and DTK tried to hold their “Democratic Resistance for Freedom” demonstration despite his ban, saying police used proportionate force in the incident in which a BDP deputy was injured.
“What business does a deputy have being at a demonstration? I’m of course sorry for the injured deputy [Pervin Buldan]. She said after the demonstration that she was made into a target. Nothing like that happened. I wish her a speedy recovery, but what was a deputy doing there when there was a ban? We do not know what exactly hit her leg. It could have been a stone or the capsule of a [pepper] gas bomb. We are investigating the possibilities,” daily Akşam quoted Toprak as saying.
The governor’s office would have allowed the rally to proceed if it had been scheduled for the following day, Toprak said in an interview with daily Akşam. Banning the rally was entirely his decision, the governor said, adding, “The date selected for the rally was meaningful. When the BDP and DTK came to us asking to hold a rally, we told them it could not be on July 14, because July 14  was the date when they declared their so-called democratic autonomy and when the martyrs were killed in the Silvan incidents. They wanted to hold the rally on that symbolic day. We could not allow that.” According to Toprak, 79 people were wounded, 23 of whom were policemen. Also, 87 people were detained, 12 of whom were minors.