Mogherini and Hahn: A political solution is the only viable option

Statement by EU High Representative/Vice-President Federica Mogherini and Commissioner Johannes Hahn on the arrest of co-mayors of Diyarbakir.

We have seen very worrying reports of the arrests of the democratically elected co-mayors of Diyarbakir, in south east Turkey, Ms. Gültan Kışanak and Mr. Firat Anli.

Over the last 15 months, violence never stopped in the south east of Turkey. The EU fully recognises the grave threat posed to Turkish security by the PKK, which is also listed as a terrorist organisation in the EU. At the same time, it is always essential that all steps are taken in full respect of the rule of law, due process and fundamental freedoms - all commitments Turkey has made as a candidate country.

The EU reiterates its call for a political solution: Arms must be laid down and a process of internal political dialogue should start as a matter of priority, involving the elected representatives of the affected population. A political solution is the only viable option.

October 26, 2016