HDP’s Democracy March reaches Ankara

Participants of the “march for democracy against the political coup” have reached their final destination.

The Peoples’ Democratic Party has organized a two-track democracy march to Ankara, beginning from the western province of Edirne and the southeastern province of Hakkari, in response to the revocation of the parliamentary status of HDP MPs Leyla Güven and Musa Farisoğulları and the Erdoğan-AKP regime's continuing crackdown on the party and the opposition in general.

As part of a broader campaign titled “The Democratic Struggle Program”, the march aimed to meet with different sections of society and deliver their demands to Ankara. The march started on June 15 from Hakkari and Edirne and is set to end in Ankara on June 20, today.

During the march, there have been meetings with NGOs, voters and comrades in the struggle for democracy. The meetings focused on the government’s trustee policy, arrest of democratically elected mayors, struggle against the revocation of deputies’ parliamentary immunity and their arrests, removal of the isolation on Kurdish People’s Leader Abdullah Öcalan, resolution of the Kurdish question through democratic ways and the policies of the Turkish government.

Participants of the march have reached their final destination today, on the 6th day of the demonstration.

For the final event of the march, HDP people and representatives of dozens of NGOs have gathered at the Assembly Park.

Police forces obstructed people and journalists from entering the park, arguing that there is a limit of 120 people for the event.

The event is attended by HDP officials and members, Peoples’ Democratic Congress (HDK) co-spokesperson Sedat Şenoğlu, representatives of the Federation of Socialist Assemblies and Partizan group, Human Rights Association (OHD) co-president Öztürk Türkdoğan, Turkish Medical Association (TTB) Central Council President Sinan Adıyaman, Revolutionary 78’ers Initiative President and poet Ahmet Telli, Confederation of Public Workers’ Unions (KESK) Co-president Mehmet Bozgeyik, Pir Sultan Abdal Cultural Association (PSAKD) President Gani Kaplan and representatives of several other democratic mass organizations.

Speaking here, HDP Central Executive Board (MYK) Member İlknur Birol said: “We have staged a march from Edirne and Hakkari to Ankara and we once again Show our determination here that our struggle will continue in all areas of democratic politics.”

Speakers sent greetings to deputies Leyla Güven, Musa Farisoğulları and Enis Berberloğlu who were recently removed from their parliamentary seats.

HDP Co-chairs Pervin Buldan and Mithat Sancar were met by the crowd with great enthusiasm.

Buldan and Sancar announced their observations and the demands of the people with a press conference.

The press statement of HDP co-chairs said that the main goal of “The Democratic Struggle Program” was to defend democracy, laws, rights, justice and freedoms against the pro-coup mindset.

The statement pointed out that the march has revealed how vital it is for the society of Turkey, which has been left breathless, to increase the struggle.

“We have marched for therights and demands of millions who can’t make both ends meet, those who call for peace against war and a democratic and peaceful solution to the Kurdish question, those who ask for free and equal citizenship and a democratic institution, for women, youth, laborers, workers, the poor and the unemployed.”

The statement continued: “With this march, our party has once again proved to be a significant part of Turkey, assurance of democracy and unyielding defender of global rights and freedoms.”

The co-chairs emphasized the importance of joint struggle by democratic forces and political opposition against the AKP-MHP government that is becoming more and more authoritarian every day. They said they have frustrated the intentions of those who have tried their best to hamper the democracy march and led smear campaigns.

The statement added: “During the course of the march, we have met with over 30 institutions including bar associations, human rights associations, associations of mothers who defend peace while the graves of their children are attacked, chambers of industry and commerce, professional societies and civilian initiatives. Most of these instutions marched with us, shoulder to shoulder, increased the joint struggle and did their part.”