Pro-PKK chants at HDP election celebration

DAILY SABAH
ANKARA
Published 06.04.2019 00:19

The pro-PKK Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) provincial and district mayors-elect organized a ceremony to celebrate the local election results on March 31 in Turkey's southeastern Diyarbakır province; yet, the meeting saw chants and slogans supporting jailed PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan due to his birthday falling on the same day.

"We will strengthen our city by eliminating the rubble from the past. We will solve all local problems with our material and moral support," Adnan Selçuk Mızraklı, the unofficial mayor of Diyarbakır, said on Thursday in his speech during the celebration.

Mızraklı, mayor-to-be of 14 of Diyarbakır's districts, and locals of the province gathered on Thursday in the HDP party building in the city's center to celebrate the results of the elections. While chants devoted to the PKK were voiced, people stood in silent homage for terrorists killed in operations in the meeting on the occasion of Öcalan's birthday.

Following the celebrations, the Chief Public Prosecutor's Office in Diyarbakır yesterday initiated a probe into the matter.

Mızraklı has been tried on terror-linked accusations along with another HDP co-chair candidate in Diyarbakır, Hülya Alaökmen Uyanık. The lawsuit indicated that he is a member of a health commission for the PKK-linked Democratic Society Congress (DTK).

Diyarbakır was one of the provinces where the Peace and Democratic Party (BDP), which preceded the HDP, was elected in the 2014 local elections. However, the city suffered from violent clashes between the PKK and security forces. PKK terrorists inflicted serious damage to the city's infrastructure and historic structures. Following the escalation of the clashes, a trustee was appointed by the state in lieu of a mayor accused of aiding and abetting terrorist activities.

The HDP is known for its support of autonomy in regions where large Kurdish populations live. Also, some of its members have been charged or accused of having links to the PKK terrorist organization. Its former co-leader, Selahattin Demirtaş, was arrested in November 2016 over terrorist propaganda. Many of its members have often voiced overt support for the PKK.

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