HDP to encompass BDP in 2015 Parliamentary elections, says HDP chair

HDP to encompass BDP in 2015 Parliamentary elections, says HDP chair

All candidates of the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) for Parliament in the next elections scheduled for June 2015 will run under the roof of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP), the latter party’s chair Yavuz Önen said.

“We [HDP and BDP] are progressing to our target of running for elections under the roof of a single party. In the upcoming local elections, two parties will run, but it will not be the case in general elections. One party will run in the general elections and it will be the HDP. The BDP will not present candidates at the general elections; all candidates for Parliament will run as HDP members,” Önen, a veteran human rights activist himself who chairs the HDP, told the Anadolu Agency on Oct. 24.

Önen’s remarks came a day after three BDP lawmakers –Sırrı Süreyya Önder, Sebahat Tuncel and Ertuğrul Kürkçü- resigned from their parties in a move to join the HDP, which will hold an extraordinary congress over the weekend.

The BDP previously discussed entering local elections under the HDP; however, leading figures of the BDP reportedly objected the idea. The BDP will nominate candidates for the March 2014 local elections in 21 provinces of the east and southeastern parts of Turkey, where most of its votes usually come from, while the HDP will enter the election in the western parts of Turkey.

Stating that they are aiming to bring all components of leftist opposition in Turkey, Önen said: “We are aiming to mobilize the leftist [movements] of Turkey and bring dissenting dynamics together. We refuse war and violence, we are defending peace.”

HDP has been formed as an umbrella party encircling BDP and some leftist parties after the suggested idea from the jailed leader of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), Abdullah Öcalan, when BDP officials visited him.

Öcalan suggested BDP “to become the party of all of Turkey,” BDP lawmaker İbrahim Binici said on Oct. 24, speaking at a press conference in Parliament.

“He suggested that we should cooperate with leftist movements of Turkey for true social democratic values. The [main opposition] Republican People’s Party [CHP] is no longer a social democrat party; it has become more right wing than other rightist parties. The HDP was founded to fill this gap of Turkey,” Binici said.