Statement by our Foreign Affairs Spokespersons Feleknas Uca and Hişyar Özsoy:
The HDP has been under severe attacks by the AKP government since the general election of 7 June 2015. Thousands of party members, including co-chairs, deputies, executives and co-mayors, are in Turkish prisons. There have also been physical attacks as a consequence of the government's criminalization policies against the HDP. Such policies have most recently led to the murder of a young woman, Deniz Poyraz, who was killed by an assailant’s gunfire as she worked in the HDP office in İzmir. Now we are seeing another provocation by the police, carried out right in front of the HDP’s headquarters in Ankara. The Minister of Interior’s unlawful attacks on the HDP are getting an even uglier turn.
On the morning of 5 May 2022, three people, who claimed that the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) had kidnapped their children, laid a black wreath in front of our party headquarters, accusing the HDP of being the same with the PKK – which is the government’s discourse to criminalize and shut down the HDP before the next presidential elections. The three protestors were directed and controlled by the police, and, even after they had laid their wreath and walked away from the party building, the police continued their provocative actions and blockaded our headquarters. When HDP deputies and members protested this police provocation, the police attacked them harshly. Our Spokesperson for Women’s Assembly, Batman MP Ms. Ayşe Acar Başaran, wanted to make a press statement against this attack, but was, herself, verbally attacked by a police officer, who threatened to kill her, “I’ll nail you on the wall.” Late in the afternoon, the police attacked the protesting HDP members again. The police tried to enter the headquarters and break down the doors, and they released pepper spray from close range at party members, including Ms. Başaran. 9 HDP members, including central executive board members, were battered, detained, and released hours later after being interrogated.
This organized attack is part of a long campaign aimed at silencing and completely eliminating the HDP. Our party, which is already under multiple unlawful attacks such as the closure case and “Kobanê case,” is now receiving physical attacks. As in the periods preceding the 2015 June and November elections, the government is fighting for its survival by means of increasing repression and violence against the HDP. As we get closer to the elections, it is likely that such attacks will peak. Of course, we will not bow to the government's sheer unlawfulness and continue to grow our struggle for democracy, freedom, and peace. Please follow the attacks on the HDP closely and do not remain silent in the face of such unabashed unlawfulness and injustice.
Feleknas Uca & Hişyar Özsoy
HDP’s Co-spokespersons for Foreign Affairs
6 May 2022