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Diyarbakir celebrates after HDP election breakthrough

The historic Kurdish breakthrough in Turkey’s parliamentary elections sparks boisterous celebrations across the southeast and boosts hopes for a negotiated settlement of Kurdish grievances.
Fireworks explode as supporters of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) celebrate along a street after the parliamentary election in Diyarbakir, Turkey, June 7, 2015. Partial results from Turkey's parliamentary election on Sunday put the ruling AK Party on 43.6 percent of the vote, with just under two-thirds of ballots counted, a level which could leave it struggling to form a single-party government. The results, broadcast by CNN Turk, put the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) at 10.6

DIYARBAKIR, Turkey — The gunfire echoing through Diyarbakir could have been mistaken for clashes if it weren’t for the fireworks and the boisterous convoys halting traffic in the streets. The city, the largest in Turkey’s mainly Kurdish southeast, has been the scene of wild celebrations since the evening of June 7, when the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) made history by passing the infamous 10% national threshold to enter parliament, boosting hopes for a negotiated settlement of the Kurdish question.

According to preliminary results, the HDP won 80 seats in the 550-member parliament, including 10 of the 11 seats for Diyarbakir, leaving only one to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). The breakthrough came at the end of a tense campaign marred by violence that culminated in two deadly bomb blasts just at the start of the party’s main rally in Diyarbakir on June 5. 

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