International criticisms of the removal of Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) MP Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu’s parliamentary immunity in Turkey and the attempt to close down the HDP have intensified.
Nacho Sánchez Amor, the European Parliament Standing Rapporteur for Turkey and Sergey Lagodinsky, the Chair of the Delegation to the EU-Turkey Joint Parliamentary Committee, issued a statement on Wednesday condemning the Turkish parliamentary decision to strip human rights defender and HDP MP Gergerlioğlu of his parliamentary seat and parliamentary immunity.
Amor and Lagodinsky described Gergerlioğlu’s conviction, expulsion and expected incarceration because of a social media post as “a severe violation of his human rights and another serious step that further undermines the trust in Turkey’s parliamentary democracy”.
Manon Aubry and Martin Schirdewan, Co-Chairs of the European Parliament Left Group (GUE/NGL), and Tiny Kox, the Council of Europe’s Parliamentary Assembly President of the United Left Group of Europe (UEL), issued a joint statement condemning the attempts to close the HDP. “We demand that the European Council at its upcoming 25/26 March meeting that will also discuss EU-Turkey relations, addresses the severe human rights violations with the necessary priority and insists on Turkey implementing its human rights action plan and legal reforms as announced”, they said.
“Shutting down the second-largest opposition party of Turkey is to take a step towards dictatorship. Erdoğan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) and his extreme right-wing partner the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) continues to shred the remaining components of a democratic Turkey”, said the Left Party (Die Linke) of Germany.
The Left Party also appealed to the German Chancellor Angela Merkel to “take a diplomatic initiative” and “put pressure on Erdoğan’s government in order to stop the attacks on the opposition in Turkey”. The French Communist Party (PCF) warned of “a new stage” in building “a dictatorship” in Turkey and defined the lawsuit to close the HDP permanently as “crossing the line”.
“We appeal to France and the EU to apply sanctions on Erdoğan’s regime and to provide support to the democratic forces of Turkey”, said the PCF.