"We have to stand together now and stand behind all the victims of political repression."
~ Bernadette Devlin.
~ Bernadette Devlin.
While US and western media have been busy promoting the cause of "democracy" in Iran, they have remained suspiciously silent over the ongoing crackdown against democratically elected Kurdish politicians in Turkey. Since 24 December, a number of Kurdish politicians have been arrested by the Turkish state. These include members of the now closed DTP and its succession party, the BDP (Peace and Democracy Party--Barış ve Demokrasi Partisi).
In addition to the arrests of DTP/BDP politicians, the vice-president of İHD and the chief of the Diyarbakır branch of the İHD, Muharrem Erbey, has also been arrested and the İHD office unlawfully raided.
Here is a current list of the arrested:
Hatip Dicle: DTP co-chairman, he was previously arrested while member of parliament and imprisoned for ten years.
Firat Anli: DTP Amed city leader. He was the mayor of Yenisehir in the last term and stood for Mayor of Cewlik in the last election.
Abdullah Demirbas: Mayor of Sur. He was removed from power by the state for supporting multi-lingual administration, but was put back into power by the people in the March Elections. In addition he has health problems that make his detainment without attention of a doctor a threat to his well being
Aydin Budak: Mayor of Cizre-- just like Demirbas was removed from power by the state and re-elected by the people.
Zulkuf Karatekin: Mayor of Kayapinar Serving his second term in office.
Nejdet Atalay: Mayor of Batman. He won his office with a high majority in Batman.
Ferhan Turk: Mayor of Kiziltepe He spent years in the notorious Amed prison and felt the full force of the coup. He is now imprisoned for the second time.
Leyla Guven: Mayor of Viransehir She has previously been a local administrator and has actively taken part in the women’s freedom movement.
Ethem Sahin: Mayor of Suruc won the local election with a landslide victory and has since changed the appearance of the town.
Huseyin Kalkan: Former mayor of Batman
Emrullah CIn: Former mayor of Viransehir
Abdullah Akengin: Former mayor of Dicle
Kazim Kurt: Former mayor of Hakkari
Nadir Bingol: Former mayor of Ergani
Ali Simsek: Assistant mayor of Amed
Yasar Sari: General Secretary of DISKI
Ferzende Abi: MEYADER (Mesopotamia Association of Those Having Lost their Relatives) Van Branch President
Tefik Say: Hacıbekir Suburb Free Citizen Association Chairman
Sıddık Gül: DTP Van Provincial Treasurer
Yıldız Tekin: BDP Women's Council Member
Eylem Açıkalın: BDP Women's Council Member
Kerem Çağlı: BDP Women's Council Member
Ramazan Özlü:BDP Women's Council Member
Selim Çay: BDP Women's Council Member
Cafer Koçak: BDP Women's Council Member
Zihni Karakaya: BDP Women's Council Member
Ahmet Sormaz: Former DTP Batman Provincial President , Göç-Der (Migration Association)
Selamet Akyüz: Batman Manager
Aydın Kılıç: former DTP city and county administrators
Gülizar Kal: Urban Women's Council employee
Cahit Conbay: politician
Rıdvan Asaln: politician
Şeymus Yaşar: politician
Şirin Bağlı: Batman Municipality Council Member
Rıfat Başalak: Batman Municipality Council Member
Nesri Kılıç: Batman Municipality Council Member
Fethi Suvari: Coordinator of Local Gundem21
Abbas Celik: Administrator of Goc-Der’s Diyarbakir Branch
Cebrail Kurt: BDP worker
A petition is available online to request the freedom of these Kurdish mayors, politicians, and political workers from Turkish prisons. Please sign the petition and disseminate widely.
TİHV Secretary General Metin Bakkalcı an urgent call for protest against the arrest of Muharrem Erbey and the DTP/BDP politicians, and has urged that the following ministers be contacted in protest:
Recep Tayyip ERDOĞAN Prime Minister
Tel: + 90 (312) 415 40 00
Fax: + 90 (312) 417 04 76
Address: Başbakanlık Merkez Bina
Beşir ATALAY Minister of the Interior
Tel: + 90 (312) 425 40 80
Faks: + 90 (312) 418 17 95
Address: T.C. İçişleri Bakanlığı, Bakanlıklar / ANKARA
Sadullah ERGİN Minister of Justice
Tel: + 90 (312) 417 77 70
Fax: + 90 (312) 419 33 70
Address: T.C. Adalet Bakanlığı 06659 Kızılay / ANKARA