Vecdi Erbay reports: After depriving thousands of villagers of electricity for months, prosecutors have launched investigations against a number of officials from the municipality of Mardin and the Dicle Electric Distribution Company (DEDAŞ). The officials face charges of corruption, bribery and bid rigging.
Bilingual Kurdish-Turkish pedestrian crossing signs in the southeastern province of Batman have been replaced with monolingual signs in Turkish by a government-appointed trustee. Ousted HDP co-mayors slammed this move saying the trustee's "animosity towards Kurdish" has been continuing.
Six co-mayors from the pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party (HDP) were removed from their posts by the Interior Ministry. While all six were replaced by trustees of the Interior Ministry, three of the southeastern co-mayors were later detained. Meanwhile, the mayor of an eastern province was detained on charges related to an ongoing investigation.
Diyarbakır Governor Hasan Basri Güzeloğlu has chaired a meeting of several AKP officials, including the heads of the party's provincial and district branches as well as women's and youth's branches. The government in August appointed Güzeloğlu as a trustee to the Diyarbakır Metropolitan Municipality, after ousting HDP mayor Selçuk Mızraklı, who was was elected garnering 62,9 percent of the votes during the local elections.
An ousted HDP mayor is facing terrorism charges over her support for a women's agricultural cooperative that was planting green beans in Mardin's villages. The prosecutors said that activities of Saray Women's Cooperative are to be considered within the framework of the KCK, which the government says is the urban wing of the PKK.
Ankara's removal of eight mayors from the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) is an example of the government using the coronavirus outbreak as an opportunity, HDP Co-Chair Mithat Sancar said in a press conference March 23. He also criticized the government's economic stimulus package for failing to fulfill the needs of healthcare workers.
Turkey's Education Ministry (MEB) has reportedly asked teachers and school administrators in the southeastern province of Van to raise funds to buy fuel for the snowplows the ministry would send. While classes restarted on Feb. 17 following a 10-day snow break, the roads remain blocked in the southeastern province of Van that received snowfall of over a meter.