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One year into crackdown, Turkey’s pro-Kurdish opposition battered but defiant

Nine members of the Peoples’ Democratic Party remain in prison a full year after the detentions on terrorism-related charges began, and joint leader Selahattin Demirtas’ first day in court is scheduled for Dec. 7.

Turkey’s opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) is weakened yet resolute a year after the detention of a dozen of its lawmakers and a wider crackdown crippled the Kurdish political cause and damaged the European Union candidate's democratic credentials.

Joint leaders Selahattin Demirtas and Figen Yuksekdag, along with 11 other parliamentarians from the pro-Kurdish bloc, were arrested in dawn raids on Nov. 4, 2016. The party leaders and seven other HDP lawmakers remain behind bars, and some of their trials on charges ranging from membership in the armed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) to inciting deadly protests have yet to begin.

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