2016 video of imprisoned Selahattin Demirtas posted by wife
The wife of imprisoned Kurdish politician Selahattin Demirtas posted a video on Friday in which he had called for a broad opposition front in Turkey merely three days before his arrest in November 2016.
Selahattin'in, tutuklanmadan sadece üç gün önce söyledikleri halen ne kadar da geçerli, değil mi? pic.twitter.com/gjg9WMg4DP— Başak Demirtaş (@Basak__Demirtas) December 16, 2022
Basak Demirtas posted the video a day after a gathering in Istanbul, held in solidarity with Istanbul Mayor Ekrem Imamoglu, who was sentenced to two years seven months and 15 days in prison for allegedly "insulting public officials" and who now faces a possible political ban.
The pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) was not invited to the gathering although it was HDP who tipped the scales in the 2019 local election by providing support for Imamoglu and enabled his victory.
HDP is systematically excluded by the opposition bloc of six parties - the Nation Alliance - not only from an elections alliance, but also from any kind of talks, in fear that even the slightest dialogue with HDP officials might alienate nationalist voters.
Demirtas says in the 2016 video:
"Much worse may be coming. It looks like we have a lot more to face yet. Solidarity is of great importance in such situations. Standing together is certainly very important, but it does not make too much sense to always remain in defense. We have to defeat them, topple them. All those who say, 'I'm worried, I'm deeply terrified for the future of my children, myself, my family,' should now make a counter move. It is not enough to only stay on our feet, we have to topple them. We have to provide a democratic government alternative in Turkey through a strong opposition bloc. Is this fascist bloc without an alternative? While this bloc has the courage to say that they will receive 50 percent of the popular vote, why can't we, those who stand for equality, freedom, justice, living together and brotherhood, say that we will receive 60 percent? In principle, we are never close to a democratic opposition bloc. And neither are our supporters."