The leader of Turkey’s main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, on Thursday visited members of the Şenyaşar family, who have been demanding justice for three of their relatives murdered by people connected to a lawmaker from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), Turkish media reported.
Kılıçdaroğlu visited the family in front of a courthouse in Şanlıurfa province where they have been staging a sit-in for the past 276 days. Speaking to the press next to Emine Şenyaşar, the mother of some of the victims, Kılıçdaroğlu said this wasn’t an ordinary case.
“This is the struggle of a mother who lost her husband and children,” he said. “Everyone needs to support this mother. How can we be deaf to the cries of a mother?”
Kılıçdaroğlu promised Emine Şenyaşar that he and his party would be following the case until justice is served.
Emine’s husband, Esvet Şenyaşar, and two of their sons, Adil and Celal, were brutally murdered on June 14, 2018 in Şanlıurfa province.
They were initially attacked in their store and taken to a hospital. However, they were followed by the family of AKP deputy İbrahim Halil Yıldız to the hospital, where they were ultimately murdered. Eight more people were injured during clashes between the two groups. An older brother of Yıldız was also killed.
According to Ferit Şenyaşar, bullets from 17 different guns were retrieved from the body of one of his brothers.
Two Şenyaşar brothers, Ferit and Fadıl, who were injured but survived, were later detained, and Fadıl Şenyaşar was arrested. However, none of Yıldız’s relatives or his bodyguards were detained despite the fact that three people had died.
Only 15 months later, on September 18, 2020, was Yıldız’s older brother Enver Yıldız arrested.
The Yıldız family claimed the Kurdish Şenyaşar family had links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and that they had been victims of terrorism.