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Turkey’s Kurds excluded from post-coup national unity

Turkey’s Kurds, largely excluded from efforts at national unity after the failed coup, have appealed for reconciliation and revival of talks to end the Kurdish conflict.
People gather on a main square of Kurdish-dominated city of Diyarbakir during the "No to Coup! Democracy Now Rally" organised by pro-Kurdish opposition Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), Turkey, July 31, 2016. REUTERS/Sertac Kayar  - RTSKGUU
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DIYARBAKIR, Turkey — Tens of thousands of people flocked to Station Square in Diyarbakir, Turkey’s largest Kurdish-majority city, July 31 for the biggest gathering there since a twin bomb attack bloodied a pre-election rally of the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) last year. For the first time since the deadly attack, the HDP held a rally at the venue to denounce the July 15 coup attempt, but to also warn Ankara against straying from the path of democracy.

Months-long clashes between Kurdish militants and the security forces have left Diyarbakir a wounded city, with the HDP ostracized and snubbed by the government in Ankara. Still, rally-goers vocally condemned the coup bid against President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), brandishing banners that urged both “democratic resistance” against the coup and “radical democracy” in its aftermath.

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