HDP to boycott Turkish parliament opening
The parliamentary group of opposition People’s Democratic Party (HDP) will not attend the parliament’s new legislative year that is due to begin on Oct. 1, according to a party spokesman.
Speaking at a news conference at HDP headquarters in Ankara on Sept. 28, Osman Baydemir accused Turkey’s judicial system of “demolishing the free will of nation.”
“We will not be a part to the covering up of lawlessness and injustice. [For this reason,] we will not attend the legislative year beginning on Oct. 1,” said Baydemir.
The Turkish government has accused the HDP of being linked to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which is listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S., and the EU.
Several HDP lawmakers, including former co-leader Figen Yüksekdağ and co-leader Selahattin Demirtaş, were arrested last November for allegedly failing to cooperate in a counter-terrorism investigation.
Reminding that the party’s lawmakers were in prison, Baydemir said his party’s parliamentary group would stand in front of the prison in Edirne where their leader Demirtaş remains under arrest.
The HDP “deputies, who represent the will [of the peopel] in the parliament, and were elected by the nation, are in Edirne, Kandıra, Silivri and Sincan prisons,” said the party spokesman.
HDP deputies have been facing prosecution under the country’s anti-terrorism law after their parliamentary immunities were lifted in March 2016.