The head of Turkey's Islamist Ottoman Hearths (Osmanlı Ocakları) group has said that the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) shouldn't be shut down, even though he himself filed an application for the party's closure.
"A political ban must be imposed on HDP politicians, but the party shouldn't ne shut down," Kadir Canpolat, who was the first to submit an application to the Court of Cassation on June 18, 2020, said.
"I did file an application for the HDP's closure, but I'm not supporting that anymore. I don't think it will benefit the people and the state. I don't like HDP executives because they tricked my brothers on this soil and made them terrorists," he said, using the government's discourse on the HDP having links with the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
Turkey's Constitutional Court last month accepted an indictment filed by a top prosecutor seeking a ban on the HDP for alleged ties to the PKK, opening the way for a case to close parliament's third-largest party.
The case follows a years-long crackdown on the HDP, in which thousands of its members have been tried on mainly terrorism-related charges. The party denies links to terrorism and described the case as a "political operation."
The judges unanimously accepted the indictment from Turkey's top appeals court.
Canpolat on July 15 said that if the party is shut down, it will become a radical group.
"The party's budget should be cut, but it shouldn't be closed. It will become a marginal group if you do so and radicalization would take place," he said.