Swedish FM calls HDP’s Demirtaş, voices concern

Swedish FM calls HDP’s Demirtaş, voices concern

Swedish FM calls HDP’s Demirtaş, voices concern Sweden’s FM Margot Wallström has called HDP co-chair Demirtaş and voiced her concerns over recent attacks against the party, as well as the siege of Cizre in southeastern Şırnak province where a curfew entered its eight day.

Wallström initiated a telephone conversation with Demirtaş and received information concerning both the attacks against party buildings and the incidents in Cizre, the HDP announced in a brief statement released on Sept. 11.

“[Wallström] conveyed her concerns and feelings of solidarity,” the HDP said.

Turkish security forces stopped Demirtaş and other HDP politicians on Sept. 10 from marching to Cizre, where they say 21 civilians have been killed and a humanitarian crisis has unfolded since authorities imposed a curfew to combat militants of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). 

Turkish authorities said nearly all of those killed in the week-old curfew were PKK militants. 

Cizre, near Turkey’s borders with Syria and Iraq, has become a flashpoint in two months of deepening violence in the mainly Kurdish southeast. Hundreds have died since PKK militants and the state resumed hostilities after the collapse of a two-year-old de facto non-conflict in July. 

In late August, Demirtaş held a meeting with Wallström in Stockholm. 

“The HDP is an important political power for shaping the future of Turkey. Sweden and Turkey have a strategic partnership and Sweden supports Turkey’s closer ties with the EU, which require a deepening of democracy and the rule of law. It is now of the utmost importance to resume the peace process and the ceasefire,” Wallström had said at a joint press conference following her meeting with Demirtaş.