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Regional Kurdish party in AKP'S crosshairs

The Kurdish Democratic Regions Party, which controls most of the local administrations in the southeast of Turkey, is under intense pressure not only over the self-rule movement in its provinces but as a staunchly democratic counterpoint to the authoritarian trend in Turkish politics.
A woman walks along a street in the southeastern Turkish town of Silopi in Sirnak province, near the Turkish-Iraqi border crossing of Habur, Turkey, August 7, 2015. Five people were killed in eastern Turkey on Friday in a series of clashes between security forces and Kurdish militants, part of a surge in violence that has put further strain on a fragile peace process between Ankara and the rebels. Three people were killed and seven wounded during clashes between police and militants of the Kurdistan Workers
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DIYARBAKIR, Turkey — The Sirnak Popular Assembly meeting that included the Democratic Regions Party (DBP) in Silopi, Sirnak province, declared self-rule on Aug. 10, 2015, under the slogan, “From now on we as the people will build our lives on a democratic basis.” Silopi's was followed by similar declarations from Cizre, Sirnak, Hakkari, Mus, Batman, Van and Diyarbakir.

State prosecutors leapt into action when President Recep Tayyip Erdogan reacted to the self-rule declaration with, “They will pay the price.” Judicial investigations and police action against the declaration were immediate. In Sirnak, 10 locations including the residences of the DBP chairman and other party officials were raided. One member of the municipal council and two DBP officials were detained. In Yuksekova, in simultaneous raids at 15 locations, eight people were detained on charges of attempting to undermine the constitutional order. In similar operations, the DBP co-mayors of Sur and Silvan and many party members were rounded up.

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