Turkish government excludes main Kurdish party from constitution talks

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Selahattin Demirtas, leader of the Kurdish People's Democratic Party (HDP). File photo

ARA News 

ISTANBUL – The Turkish authorities have excluded the main Kurdish party in the country from talks on a new constitution.

Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu refused to hold any talks with members of the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) over the new constitution, accusing the party’s leadership of taking a ‘disrespectful’ attitude towards the government.

“It is not appropriate to accept them (HDP) as negotiators after their disrespectful and provocative comments,” he told a press conference during an official visit to Serbia on Monday.  

Davutoglu’s statement comes after the Turkish authorities accused the HDP leader Selahattin Demirtas of ‘treason’ for visiting Moscow last week and considering Turkey’s downing of a Russian warplane over Syria as “a wrong decision”. 

In the meantime, the Turkish army forces continued on Monday its fierce military operations against the Kurdish-populated towns of Cizre and Silopi in the southeastern province of Şırnak under the pretext of pursuing rebels of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).  

“I can discuss the constitution with anyone, but the unity of Turkey is not a matter of discussion,” Davutoglu said, considering Kurds as separatists.

The Turkish official stance towards the HPD comes one day after the Kurdish political coalition of the Democratic Society Congress (DTK) released a statement demanding the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to stop the ongoing military campaign against the Kurdish region southeast Turkey and to respect the rights of the Kurdish people.

“The rightful resistance waged by our people against the policies that undermine the Kurdish problem, is essentially a demand and struggle for local self-governance and local democracy,” DTK said.

Reporting by: Eaz Ciziri 

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