The Court of Cassation’s Public Prosecution Office removed the parties which have the word ‘Kurdistan’ in their name from the list of current/operating political parties.  A lawsuit was opened to shut down the Kurdistan Freedom Party. Party delegates objected the case and describe it as ‘discrimination’ and ‘intolerance’.

Hayri Demir

The parties which have the word ‘Kurdistan’ in their names were removed from the website of the Court of Cassation’s Public Prosecution Office, although they had been included until recently in the part of the website hosting information about political parties.

Although found properly and legally and still active, the three political parties which use the word ‘Kurdistan’ in their name were removed from the list of ‘Active Political Parties’ in the site on 6th of February. The parties which are not in the list, although still active, are the Kurdistan Freedom Party, the Turkey Kurdistan Democrat Party and the Kurdistan Socialist Party.

While there are supposed to be 82 political parties in the list, the number of the active parties is 78.  The names of the four political parties were removed from the list of ‘Active Political Parties’ in the website and their place stands empty. The last update of the site was done on 3rd of January 2019.

The parties not in the list objected to this situation too. After this situation came to light, Mustafa Özçelik, the party leader of the Kurdistan Freedom Party (KFP), made a statement to the Halagazeteciyiz.net. He said that their party was established legally and added that such an action, in spite of their party being still active, is unacceptable.

‘THERE IS NO LEGAL BASIS’ 

Özçelik said that ‘There is no legal basis. We objected to the necessary places, including the Court of Cassation. Οur lawyers are still working on the issue. We expect that this situation will be corrected as soon as possible.’

A TRIAL WAS OPENDED TO SHUT DOWN THE KFP

In the meantime, the Court of Cassation apparently opened a trial against the KFP. While there is no information about the details of the reasoning, the officials of PAK are preparing to make a comprehensive statement about the shutting down trial.

On the other hand, although the Party of Freedom and Socialism (PFS), which changed its name to Kurdistan Communist Party (KCP) at the Congress in 2018, has reported to the Court of Cassation’s Public Prosecution Office on the name change, it is in the list with its previous name. The PFS was established in 2011. After the party changed its name, the number of the parties whose name includes the word ‘Kurdistan’ increased to four. But this party also was not included in the current list of the Court of Cassation.

Sinan Çiftyürek, the party leader of the KCP, made a statement to the Halagazeteciyiz.net. He said that they reported to the Court of Cassation’s Public Prosecution Office on the name change but received a notification about the regulation. He stated that they prepared a 15-page defense and conveyed it to the Court of Cassation’s Public Prosecution Office.

In addition, he described the removal from the lists of the parties whose names include the word ‘Kurdistan’, although established according to the Political Parties Act, as ‘intolerance’.

 

THIS IS DIRECTLY RELATED TO THE CURRENT KURDISH POLICY

Çiftyürek reminded that many Turkish state officials including president Tayyip Erdoğan used the word ‘Kurdistan’ many times. He said that “there is an intolerance against the word Kurdistan. This situation is directly related to the current Kurdish policy of the government. As we do not accept it, we work on fixing it. Other parties got their certificate of receipt from the Court of Cassation’s Public Prosecution Office and are still active. Not being in the list is an indication of discrimination.”

The word ‘Kurdistan’ started to officially appear in the names of parties in 2014. First time in the history of the republic, the Kurdistan Democratic Part of Turkey applied to the Ministry of Interior with a name which included the word ‘Kurdistan’. In spite of a contested process, the legal entity of the party was accepted latter.

Subsequently the Kurdistan Freedom Party (KFP) and the Kurdistan Socialist Party (KSP) made the necessary applications. After the applications had been accepted, they were included in the lists, which today do not contain them.

Translation: İrem Aki