HDP lawmaker Leyla Güven arrested after release ruling
DİYARBAKIR – Anadolu Agency
A court in the southeastern Diyarbakır province ordered the release of Leyla Güven, a lawmaker of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), on June 29, according to a judicial source, but she was later arrested again by a higher court.
The Ninth Heavy Penal Court in Diyarbakır gave the order for her release citing the lack of adequate evidence against Güven who was facing terror-related charges, said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to the media.
Güven was accused of terror activities following her statements and social media posts on Turkey’s “Operation Olive Branch” against the People’s Protection Units (YPG) in the Afrin region of northwestern Syria.
She was arrested on Jan. 22 as part of a probe launched by the Diyarbakır Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office.
The prosecutor, who demanded more than 31 years in imprisonment for Güven after accusing her of “establishing and managing an armed terrorist organization” as well as “making propaganda for terrorists", objected the ruling at a higher court, the Tenth Heavy Penal Court in Diyarbakır.
The higher court accepted the objection on June 29 and ordered the arrest of Güven, who was elected as HDP deputy for the southeastern province of Hakkari in the June 24 presidential and parliamentary elections.
A number of HDP officials are currently imprisoned. One of them is the party’s former co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş, who ran as the presidential candidate in the June 24 election.
Demirtaş received 8.4 percent of the votes in the election, which took place under an ongoing state of emergency.
Meanwhile, the HDP made it above the much-criticized 10 percent threshold a party needs to pass in order to secure seats in parliament and secure representation.
The HDP won 11.7 percent of the votes in the parliamentary race on June 24 and secured 67 seats in a parliament with 600 seats.