The co-chair of Turkey’s pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP), Pervin Buldan, during a speech to her party group on Tuesday held an Amedspor scarf, the football club of the Kurdish-majority southeastern province of Diyarbakır (Amed) which faced racist attacks at the weekend.
Buldan lashed out at Devlet Bahçeli, the leader of the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) who earlier on Tuesday said that there was no place called Amed, ignoring the Kurdish name of the province, which is the stronghold of the Kurdish freedom movement.
Bahçeli also saluted Bursaspor fans, who during a match on Sunday in the country’s northwestern province, threw objects, including knives and bullets, to Amedspor players throughout the game and displayed symbols of extrajudicial killings and abductions that took place in Turkey’s southeast during the 1990s.
Buldan said that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s ally, Bahçeli, once more stood behind racist attacks and criminal gangs that terrorised the country’s Kurdish-majority provinces almost 30 years ago.
“There is no Amed, no Amedspor he said. And here I am saying once more: Amed exists and will continue to exist,” Buldan said in response to Bahçeli.
“Amedspor exits and will continue to exist. Amedspor will continue to score goals,” she went on.
What will cease to exist will be the government Bahçeli supports, Buldan said, mentioning the upcoming elections on 14 May.
“Our people will sure give the greater response at ballot boxes to those who want to revive the dark spirit of the 1990s, who see fascism as life support,” she said.
The politician in her speech also mentioned Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, the leader of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), who was nominated on Monday as the presidential candidate of the Nation Alliance established by six political parties.
“I want to congratulate Kılıçdaroğlu for his candidacy,” she said, adding that her party prioritises political principals and its responsibilities to people instead of shallow political interests.
“I would like to tell the public that in coming days we will once more reevaluate our policy on whether to name a presidential candidate taking into account the latest developments,” Buldan said.
The politician echoes the statements of the HDP’s other co-chair, Mithat Sancar, who on Monday invited Kılıçdaroğlu to a meeting in party headquarters in order to discuss a common understanding for a roadmap that will guide Turkey’s democratic transition after the 14 May presidential elections.