Selahattin Demirtaş, the imprisoned former co-chairperson of the People’s Democratic Party (HDP), said the massacre of a Kurdish family in Konya was the outcome of the Turkish government’s discriminatory policies which emboldened gangs within the state.
“Unfortunately, what’s behind this massacre and the ensuing tension and conflicts is the government’s discriminatory policies, criminalising rhetoric and ‘dirty plots’ of the gangs within the state, emboldened by the government,” he commented on Twitter.
“I humbly advise the people not to give any ground or yield to the language of hatred and discriminatory policies. Whatever the conditions are, let’s act rationally and patiently, not with rage. Let’s take refuge in the collective conscience we’ll create together.”
Meanwhile, a relative of the massacred family, Harun Rıfatoglu, was beaten by the police when he arrived at the scene of the massacre, MA reports.
“I wanted to see my uncle and my aunt. I suddenly saw police batons behind me,” he said. “They hit me. I fell and got up. I reacted and asked who hit me. I swore. Ten to fifteen of them were then on top of me.”
Another relative, Halis Boran, spoke to Artı Gerçek when he was visiting the mourning family, and stated what the “old feud” the Turkish Interior Minister referred to after the incident, was about.
“Yaşar Dedeoğulları was always in touch with me regarding the ongoing feud,” he said. “He’d been working for a man named Veli 15 years ago. They had taken a break from work and turned on the radio. There was news about five soldiers being killed. Veli turned to Yaşar, hurling insults at the Kurds. Yaşar reacted by saying, ‘I’m a Kurd too,’ and he asked Veli to stop cursing. A brawl ensued. That was the start of the feud.”