HDP: Turkey’s democratization depends on permanent peace

Turkey’s pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) held a press conference on Wednesday to share their vision on solutions regarding the Kurdish question, stressing that Turkey’s democratization depends on a permanent peace after decades of conflict, the Bianet news website reported.

“Peace is not only avoiding conflict, death and suffering but will be the biggest step towards virtue, goodness and coexistence,” party Co-chair Pervin Buldan said in Diyarbakır.

The statement was read in Turkish by Buldan and in Kurdish by HDP deputy Feleknas Uca.

According to the HDP’s roadmap, full implementation of the European Charter of Local Self-Government agreement, which was signed by Turkey in 1992 with some derogations, would be a cornerstone for a resolution of the Kurdish question.

The “Kurdish question” is a term that frames an ongoing conflict between the Turkish military and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) that started in 1984 and also refers to the Kurdish people’s decades-long demand for their rights.

The HDP also proposed the drafting of a constitution that focuses on laicism (a type of secularism), pluralism and separation of powers, along with multilingual, multi-faith and equal citizenship. The HDP’s program foresees allowing the use of the Kurdish language in the bureaucracy and educational field.

The program mostly highlighted problems stemming from decrees issued during an ongoing state of emergency that has been extended seven times since July 2016, vowing, for example, to release all journalists, politicians, women and students who are unjustly imprisoned.

“All people who were displaced by curfews starting in 2015 will be compensated, and cities that were destroyed will be rebuilt as originally designed,” the HDP promised.

The statement also referred to two years of peace negotiations between the Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) leader Abdullah Öcalan, claiming that the process was halted due to the AKP’s political expectations.

The negotiations were cancelled by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his party after the June 7, 2015 elections in which the HDP exceeded the 10 percent election threshold and gained a strong representation in Parliament.

The HDP also called for the establishment of a Kurdish National Union that would include Kurdish people living in several Middle Eastern countries. (turkishminute.com)

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