Turkish far right party leader: "There is no place named 'Roboski' in Turkey"

Turkish far right party leader: "There is no place named 'Roboski' in Turkey"
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Upon main opposition leader's visit to a Kurdish village whose residents were killed by airstrikes 11 years ago, MHP leader Bahceli voiced his denial of the village's original name.

The leader of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), a far right and racist political party in Turkey, criticized with strong words the main opposition leader's recent visit to a Kurdish village and his use of the village's original Kurdish name instead of the official Turkish one.

Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the leader of the Republican People's Party (CHP), visited the village of Roboski (officially named "Ortasu") in the Kurdish-majority district of Uludere (Qileban) on 4 August.

The name of the village had come to be popularly known across Turkey after a deadly incident in December 2011 when 34 villagers, including 19 children, were killed by Turkish airstrikes as they were crossing the border back from the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI) with goods packed on mules.

No Turkish state official has yet faced indictment, let alone trial or punishment, over the massacre.

Saying that Kilicdaroglu intended to "reopen old wounds" by visiting the village, and that it was "sheer provocation," MHP leader Devlet Bahceli continued:

"Kilicdaroglu made yet another blunder by falling in with the dirty style of the separatist terror organization, and he did so in spite of the fact that there is no settlement by the name of 'Roboski' in the Turkish Republic."

He added:

"Advocating separatist views under the pretext of coming to terms with the past 11 years after the regrettable incident that occurred on 28 December 2011 in Uludere district of the province of Sirnak signifies providing support for the terror organization. Kilicdaroglu must particularly be aware that there is no place named 'Roboski' in Turkey, and neither has it ever existed or ever will."

MHP, currently part of the ruling "People's Alliance" alongside Justice and Development Party (AKP), has always advocated responding to the Kurdish question in Turkey by military means, and it denies the Kurdish social and cultural identity.