Demirtas’ call for an armistice echoes across Turkey
Jailed Kurdish leader Selahattin Demirtas’ call to lay down arms and start a dialogue in Turkey’s 40 years’ conflict of Kurdish insurgence resonated among the opposition parties and intellectuals in Turkey as CHP (People’s Republican Party) leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu said the move was an important step for HDP (People’s Democratic Party) to embrace Turkey.
“What Demirtas said was important to the highest degree. This is a serious step for the HDP to become Turkey’s party. This should go forward, the leaders and all the party organs should follow suit,” Kilicdaroglu said.
HDP’s alleged links to the PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party), a Kurdish militant group that has been fighting Turkey for forty years, have been used as an excuse to isolate the party not only by the ruling block, but also by the nationalist opposition parties including the CHP, which formed the Nation’s Alliance in a bid to take power in next year’s elections.
In a recent interview with T24, Demirtas dismissed any connections between HDP (People’s Democratic Party) and PKK (Kurdistan Workers’ Party) and proposed to lay down arms and start dialogue to find a peaceful solution to Kurdish question.
“A substantial part of the society lives in fear that Turkey will be divided as a result of terrorism. The government constantly provokes these fears and directs the anger towards the HDP, turning it into a scapegoat,” Demirtas said and added that the HDP should send more messages of unity and peace to make its stance visible.
Demirtas’ proposal drew support from more than 200 intellectuals as well who signed a petition to endorse the call for an armistice.
“We set a high value on Demirtas’s suggestions regarding the Kurdish question and its solution, including calls to 'exclude violence' from politics and to lay down arms,” the petition said.