ANKARA—Garo Paylan, an Armenian member of the Turkish parliament representing the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) is one of eight legislatures whose parliamentary immunity from prosecution Ankara wants to strip on charges of allegedly insulting the Turkish state and inciting terrorism among others.
According to Hurriyet Daily Newspaper, Chief Prosecutor’s office of Ankara has prepared a summary of proceedings against the eight HDP members of parliament, including Paylan, on the grounds of “insulting the Turkish nation, the Turkish state, its army and police forces,” “acting against the law on political parties,” “making terror propaganda,” and “insulting the president.”
The summary also accused that Paylan and his fellow HDP members, Osman Baydemir, Alican Önlü, Feleknas Uca, Sibel Yiğitalp, Nadir Yıldırım, Dilek Öcalan and Mizgin Irgat had “praised” the imprisoned leader of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), Abdullah Öcalan, in their speeches and publicly expressed condolences to killed PKK militants, the state-run Anadolu Agency reported on Wednesday.
The prosecutor’s request to strip the eight members of parliament has been sent to the Justice Ministry, Anadolu added.
In May 2016, the Turkish Parliament approved a law stripping its members of immunity from prosecution, which allowed prosecutors to pursue members of parliament who face investigation.
According to the HDP’s website, nine of it members of parliament, including former co-chairs Selahattin Demirtaş and Figen Yüksekdağ, are currently behind bars, alongside many former legislators and mayors.