Court arrests Van Mayor Bekir Kaya

Court arrests Van Mayor Bekir Kaya

Court arrests Van Mayor Bekir Kaya

DHA Photo

A court in the eastern province of Van has arrested Van Mayor Bekir Kaya on terror charges. 

Kaya, who was removed from his post by the Interior Ministry and detained on Nov. 17, was arrested for intentionally assisting the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). 

Kaya and four others were detained as a part of a terror probe launched by Van Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office. They were interrogated by the prosecutor’s office and Kaya and Zelal Tanlı were arrested on terror charges. Three others were released on condition of judicial control. 

The Interior Ministry appointed Van Governor İbrahim Taşyapan to run the municipality in place of Kaya, who is from the sister party of the Kurdish issue-focused Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP).

Kaya was sentenced to 15 years in jail in January on charges of “being a member of a terrorist organization,” but was appealing the verdict.

Trustees were appointed to the municipalities of the eastern provinces of Van, Siirt and Tunceli and the southeastern province of Mardin early on Nov. 17.

In addition, Sırrı Sakık, the mayor of the eastern province of Ağrı, was sentenced to a year and three months in prison on charges of “making terror propaganda.”

“Today I received a prison sentence of a year and three months for making a speech which sees peace as a solution [to the Kurdish issue]. This sentence is a drop in the ocean when all this cruelty is ongoing,” Sakık wrote on his Twitter account late on Nov. 17.

According to a statement released by the Ağrı Municipality, Sakık will appeal against the decision.