Prosecutor Launches Probe into PKK, BDP Encounter
The Chief Prosecutor’s Office in the eastern province of Van launched a probe into an encounter between members of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) who were conducting a road check in the southeastern province of Hakkari and a delegation of politicians, including certain members of the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP.)
The Chief Prosecutor's Office in the eastern province of Van launched a probe on Saturday into an encounter between members of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and a delegation of politicians, including certain members of the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP,) who were on a visit to the district of Şemdinli in the southeastern province of Hakkari on Aug. 17
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, President Abdullah Gül and Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the head of the main opposition People's Republican Party (CHP,) also issued public comments regarding the matter.
The delegation in Şemdinli included BDP Co-chair Gültan Kışanak, BDP deputies Ertuğrul Kürkçü, Sebahat Tuncel, Hüsamettin Zenderlioğlu, Halil Aksoy, Nazmi Gür, BDP Deputy Group President İdris Baluken, as well as Aysel Tuğluk, the co-chair of the Democratic Society Congress (DTK,) Selma Gürkan, the head of the Labor Party (EMEP,) Bilge Seçkin Çetinkaya, the co-chiar of the Freedom and Solidarity Party (ÖDP) and Figen Yüksekdağ, the head of the Socialist Party of the Oppressed (ESP.)
PKK members intercepted the delegation at a road junction between the village of Bağlar and the town of Derecik and conversed with them after exchanging hugs. The Van Chief Prosecutor's Office consequently launched a probe after images of the encounter appeared in the press.
"They stopped our convoy of 100 vehicles. They did not conduct an identity check. They informed [us] on their aims. They said they were maintaining a presence in the region and expressed their desire for [relevant parties] to endeavour for peace without delay. They said they were striving for the cause of freedom, peace and rights, not just for Kurdistan, but for the whole of Turkey and the Middle East," Ertuğrul Kürkçü had earlier told bianet.
"They said the ball was now in Ankara's court and that their efforts had run their course. They offered me [to stay] as a guest, and in turn, I told them to come and visit us instead. We smiled in [a show of] courtesy. They were good kids, like [CHP deputy] Hüseyin Aygün had said. It was the most hilarious dialogue that could take place between a deputy and the guerilla," Kürkçü had said.
Deputy Tuğluk: "This is not illegal"
"What we went through is nothing illegal. We faced an extremely natural and real situation. If [the authorities] are not aware of this, then that is their own problem. We are quite happy about that encounter. It was important and meaningful for us to at least listen to them and [see] the sort of struggle they were waging, and under what kind of circumstances," Aysel Tuğluk said in response to the probe launched by the prosecutor.
PM Erdoğan: "Such fondness!"
"As you see, deputies can hug each other as [brothers and sisters.] This is what they say, and all of it is on record. The media has already spotted this. What falls on our part is to say 'Such fondness!' This is how fond they are of each other. Similar scenes were also played out in the past, too" Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said.
President Abdullah Gül also expressed his dissatisfaction with the developments:
"I warn all my citizens once more. Everyone ought to distance themselves sharply from those who engage in violence, terrorism and bloodshed. I also [advise] them to depart from this path and come back to their country, their families and drop the weapons of terrorism in their hands. These images are tragic. Everyone must act with a grave feeling of responsibility," Gül said.
CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu: "Where was the state?"
"Did the meeting between the PKK and the BDP deputies take place in Oslo, Syria, the U.S. or Australia? No, it happened in Turkey. The media, the PKK, the BDP, journalists, a certain section of the people were all there. I wonder where the state was. Does the prime minister ever question this? Where was the state, the government?" CHP leader Kılıçdaroğlu commented.
"One must first ask 'Mr. Prime Minister, which country's [leader] are you?' Members of the terrorist organization and a group [of people] who support them in one way or another come together, and they hold each other in embrace. Scenes akin to what happened in Habur come out, and the CHP is to blame for. What a barren, a narrow-minded understanding of administration and politics," he added. (NV)
Hakkari - BIA News Center
20 August 2012, Monday