BDP finds no one to hold talks within AKP, Kurdish leader says

BDP finds no one to hold talks within AKP, Kurdish leader says

DİYARBAKIR - Hürriyet Daily News
BDP finds no one to hold talks within AKP, Kurdish leader says

BDP members, including a deputy, wrangle with police during a rally in Diyarbakır. AA photo

There is confusion within the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) over the Kurdish issue, Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş has said, noting that his party cannot find anyone to talk to about the problem.

“There’s a disagreement within the AKP over the Kurdish issue, and we cannot find a sound person to talk inside the AKP for this reason. For example, will we be able to discuss the Kurdish issue with Deputy Prime Minister Beşir Atalay? What can we discuss with a minister who cannot make a governor obey his orders on a [BDP] rally?” Demirtaş told a group of reporters in Diyarbakır on July 14.

The Diyarbakır Governor’s Office banned the BDP’s “Democratic Resistance for Freedom Rally” for security reasons and on the grounds that the date of the rally coincided with a deadly attack perpetrated by the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in Diyarbakır’s Silvan district on July 14, 2011, which killed 13 soldiers. According to Demirtaş, Atalay told him on the phone that the government called the Diyarbakır governor as police were attempting to disperse demonstrators. “The rally should have been allowed,” Demirtaş quoted Atalay as saying. He also said that Galip Ensarioğlu, an AKP deputy from Diyarbakır, had also requested that the governor allow the rally to occur. “Atalay and some other AKP officials made efforts to prevent the tension from increasing. Some AKP officials were aware that people are determined to hold this rally. However, the rest of those AKP officials pushed for this result,” Demirtaş said.

When reminded about Prime Minister Recey Tayyip Erdoğan’s remarks in which he said the government could negotiate with “the PKK’s representatives in the Parliament” over the Kurdish issue, in an apparent reference to the BDP, Demirtaş said they did not represent the PKK.

Demirtaş also slammed Erdoğan over his accusations against the BDP over his meeting with independent Kurdish deputy Leyla Zana.

Zana. She met with Erdoğan on June 30, two weeks after she said Erdoğan could solve the Kurdish issue. Zana faced concerted intra-party criticism over the meeting. Erdoğan on July 14 said Zana had “become a target of both the PKK and the BDP and they were trying to silence Zana with threats.”

Demirtaş played down Erdoğan’s criticism, saying the prime minister was attempting to create divisions within the BDP.

“Leyla Zana is very aware of what is going on and what sort of a plot has been designed. She will not be deceived by these plots. She took an initiative with goodwill, and we are aware of her goodwill. The prime minister is trying to divide us, but he is wrong. There’s no such situation,” he said. In further comments, Demirtaş listed the ongoing unrest in Syria as one of the main reasons for the government’s “repressive policy on Kurdish issue.” “They are trying to gain time. They are making efforts to repress the inside until the Syria conflict has been resolved. They think that they would get the votes of Turkish nationalists even if they lose the Kurdish votes. They did a cost calculation, and the result is profitable from that aspect,” Demirtaş said.