Pro-Kurdish party politician stabbed in Turkish capital -UPDATED

The unknown assailant stabbed Karatas after the politician opened a door to him at the party's offices

Pro-Kurdish party politician stabbed in Turkish capital -UPDATED

World Bulletin/News Desk

A Turkish politician was stabbed repeatedly in the capital Ankara on Tuesday, in an attack that his pro-Kurdish party blamed on a government-led 'lynch campaign' against it.

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu condemned the stabbing of Ahmet Karatas, a member of the opposition Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), and denied the government had done anything to make him a target. He said a suspect had been detained and had confessed.

Mutual recriminations are running high because of what Kurds see as Turkey's failure to protect their ethnic kin just across the border in Syria. Dozens of people were killed last month in unrest in Turkey's mainly Kurdish southeast.

Politician Ahmet Karatas was knifed in the neck and leg, a party official told Reuters. An HDP statement said he had been stabbed some seven times in the attack at the party's offices in Ankara.

According to the health ministry, Karatas was "fine" and apart from showing “normal” health indicators, he was also “conscious.”

 “The preliminary examination has revealed the patient was stabbed in various parts of his body; he was treated immediately upon arriving in the emergency room,” it said.

The statement added there were no signs of internal bleeding. Doctors are keeping Karatas under close observation.

The reason for the attack is unknown, but several media outlets report that the suspect, apparently coming from another city, had a heated exchange with party members before he stabbed Karatas.

The assailant reportedly complained he had received no attention from party officials.

Karatas' injury is not life-threatening, Sebahat Tuncel, Peoples’ Democratic Party's MP also said earlier.

The suspect is 28 years old and born in Ankara.

The government has been blaming HDP, for inciting the recent pro-Kurdish violence in last month's deadly protests that left at least 38 civilians and two police officers dead, along with scores of vehicles, state buildings, political party offices and shops damaged.

The demonstrations came after HDP issued a call via social media, inviting its sympathizers to take to the streets as a sign of solidarity with Syria's ISIL-besieged, Kurdish populated, town of Kobani.

The HDP accused the government and media of turning its leader and representatives into targets with anti-Kurdish statements and reports in recent days.

"We warn the government once more in the face of this dangerous development and call on it to abandon this sustained lynch campaign," it said.

Davutoglu rejected the accusation. "During the Kobani incidents, the HDP with its statements turned not only the government but all our citizens in the east and the whole of Turkey into targets. We never turned anyone into a target," he told reporters.

Last Mod: 04 Kasım 2014, 22:08
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