HDP headquarters attacked by unidentified assailants
HDP Co-Chair Selahattin Demirtaş warned that the AKP would try to escalate tension out of its rising sense of panic ahead of the election. AA photoUnidentified assailants have fired on the headquarters of Turkey's Kurdish problem-focused Peoples' Democracy Party (HDP) in Ankara.
Although no casualties were reported, two bullet holes were visible on the sign at the entrance of the party headquarters in the Çankaya district after the attack on early April 18, Doğan News Agency reported.
Two suspects were detained late April 18, Doğan News Agency reported.
Security camera footage shows the assailants who fired on the building at 4.00 a.m. from a moving car. Security personnel of the party headquarters returned fire and the assailants fled the scene, according to Cihan news agency.
"I condemn this attack, as I condemned the previous attacks that targeted our democracy and our stability. I invite all parties to display a joint attitude against violence whereever in Turkey it happens," Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said on April 18 in a series of tweets.
HDP lawmaker Sırrı Süreyya Önder, called the attack a "provocation" ahead of June 7 legislative elections. "Provocation is continuing. We will not yield," he wrote on Twitter.
Government, HDP in war of words as elections approach
As the elections approach, tensions run high between the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the HDP, which have been engaging with each other throughout the past months in the scope of Turkey's ongoing Kurdish peace bid.
The April 11 clash between Turkish security forces and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) in the eastern province of Ağrı strained the ties between two parties further.
The Turkish government had claimed that PKK militants were promoting HDP's election propaganda to the locals in the area.
HDP Co-Chair Selahattin Demirtaş warned on April 10 that the AKP would try to escalate tension out of its rising sense of panic ahead of the election. “We’re going into an election, not a war. As they become increasingly panicked, the party in power will try to create tension by beating the war drums," he said.
Deputy Prime Minister Yalçın Akdoğan slammed Demirtaş during a television interview late April 17. "Demirtaş acts like a spokesman of PKK; he cannot condemn the deeds of it and cannot keep his distance from the PKK; the Turkish people cannot accept such a relationship," he said.