Duvar EnglishThree opposition deputies stripped of MP statuses in Turkey
Deputies from the Kurdish issue-focused Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) were battered by police during a protest that they carried out against the imprisonment of three lawmakers, whose parliamentary statuses were stripped.
During their protest on June 5 in the capital Ankara, the deputies wanted to march to Güvenpark in Kızılay following a press statement, but were prevented by police.
HDP lawmakers Leyla Güven and Musa Farisoğulları and main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) deputy Enis Berberoğlu were stripped of their statuses as members of parliament on June 4. They were arrested hours later.
The move was slammed by the CHP and the HDP, with the latter taking their protest to the streets with banners reading, "There is a coup."Opposition deputies jailed after losing parliamentary seats
Speaking during the press statement, HDP Group Deputy Chairwoman Meral Danış Beştaş said that "the coup" that began on Nov. 4, 2016 is still ongoing.
Beştaş was referring to the day that a crackdown was launched on HDP deputies, including the party's former co-chairs Selahattin Demirtaş and Figen Yüksekdağ.
Both Güven and Farisoğulları were tried in the main Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK) case and were handed six and nine years in prison, respectively.
HDP deputies are often accused of having links to the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). A number of its deputies were stripped of their statuses in the past and scores of HDP members, including former lawmakers and mayors, are currently imprisoned.
Saying that the HDP gets its power from being right, Beştaş noted that they won't bow down to "putschists."
The lawmakers began their march after Beştaş's remarks, only to be met with heavy riot police presence at the entrance of Güvenpark.
Police then battered the deputies and ripped their banners apart.
"They're saying that the governor's office banned our entrances. Those who staged a coup in parliament yesterday are now preventing deputies' entrance to Güvenpark," HDP lawmaker Garo Paylan said.
HDP Group Deputy Chair Saruhan Oluç made a press statement after being prevented, saying that the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) is staging a coup against democracy.
"A coup is not carried out solely by the army and soldiers," Oluç said, which was followed by the deputies returning to parliament and ending their protest.