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US condemns Turkey's efforts to shutter opposition party

The Biden administration slams Turkey's move to dissolve the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party.
A young participant flashes the victory sign in front of the municipality headquarters in Diyarbakir, southeastern Turkey, on October 30, 2016, during a pro-Kurdish demonstration. A Turkish court has barred Figen Yuksekdag, a leader of the main pro-Kurdish party, from leaving the country, accusing her of "belonging to an armed terrorist organisation," the state-run Anadolu news agency reported on October 29, 2016. The HDP denounced the decision as "totally arbitrary" and said it would appeal. President Erdo

Turkey’s moves to shutter the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), the country’s second-largest opposition grouping in the parliament, drew sharp criticism from the Joe Biden administration late Wednesday. The State Department said the decision to dissolve the HDP as demanded in a Turkish prosecutor’s lawsuit filed March 17 “would unduly subvert the will of Turkish voters, further undermine democracy in Turkey and deny millions of Turkish citizens their chosen representation.”

The statement called the stripping of HDP deputy Omer Faruk Gergerlioglu’s parliamentary immunity also on March 17 “troubling” and said the United States was “closely monitoring events in Turkey.” Gergerlioglu, an ethnic Turk, has earned respect across Turkey’s deeply polarized landscape for his selflessly brave advocacy of victims of torture and government abuse. The parliament revoked his status after a court ruled in February to uphold a two and a half year prison sentence for the deputy for sharing a news article on his Twitter feed calling for the resumption of peace talks between the government and outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party militants.

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