Turkey detains dozens including mayors in anti-PKK raids

His officials said that 42 DTP members were held in the operation aimed at breaking the urban network of the militant PKK.

Turkey detains dozens including mayors in anti-PKK raids

 

Police detained dozens of Turkey's banned pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party (DTP) members, including several mayors, during anti-PKK raids on Thursday in the southeast of the country.

The early morning sweep was ordered by the chief state prosecutor in the southeastern city of Diyarbakir.

His officials told Reuters that 42 DTP members were held in the operation aimed at breaking the urban network of the militant PKK.

The Constitutional Court banned the DTP on Dec. 11 because of its ties with the PKK, a militant group designated a terrorist organisation by Turkey, the European Union and United States.

A lawyer of jailed PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan those held during the raids conducted by police anti-terrorism teams in the southeastern cities of Diyarbakir, Siirt, Sirnak and Sanliurfa, as well as Istanbul and Ankara.

On Tuesday, a state prosecutor opened an inquiry targeting Ahmet Turk, the chairman of the DTP over comments that Ocalan had sent word through his lawyers advising the party's legislators to stay in parliament following the court ban. DTP often denied "organic" links with PKK.

The legislators who had planned to quit, announced last Friday they would join another Kurdish party, the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), in order to keep their parliamentary seats.

The BDP is the seventh Kurdish political party to be formed in Turkey. Its six predecessors have been shut down.


Agencies

Last Mod: 24 Aralık 2009, 12:00
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