Jailed former Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş has announced that he has quit active politics.
Demirtaş on May 31 shared two paragraphs from his interview to be released a day later on the online news platform Artı Gerçek.
The renowned Kurdish politician said in the relevant interview, “I sincerely apologize, on my own behalf, for not being able to put forth politics that are deserving of our people. I promise that I will correct these deficiencies with my efforts in practice.”
Demirtaş also thanked “constructive criticism” levied against himself and said, “I will try to benefit from criticism. While continuing with the struggle from jail with resistance like all of my comrades, I quit active politics at this stage.”
He finished his words by expressing his wish that he can meet with people “in free days.”
Merhabalar. Yarın Artı Gerçek'te yayımlanacak röportajımdan iki paragrafı sizlerle paylaşıyorum:— Selahattin Demirtaş (@hdpdemirtas) May 31, 2023
"Ben kendi adıma, halkımıza layık bir politika ortaya koyamadığımız için içtenlikle özür diliyorum. Pratikteki çabalarımla bu eksiklikleri giderme sözü veriyorum.
A Central Executive Board member of the HDP argued that Demirtaş's announcement was normal while a source close to Demirtaş said the politician's suggestions were not being listened to by the HDP.
The unnamed source told Halk TV that in response to Demirtaş's pages-long suggestions on how to conduct politics, the HDP was merely responding by saying "Thank you." "They want that Demirtaş be silent. His suggestions are not being listened to. On top of that when the election results came this way, they tried to blame Demirtaş....He had it up to his neck and was no longer able to tolerate it," the source reportedly said.
Demirtaş has been in prison since 2016. He faces hundreds of years in prison on charges related to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) despite a previous European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) ruling that he was imprisoned on political grounds and should be released immediately.