ISTANBUL (AFP)–Anti-terror police raided on Tuesday a pro-Kurdish news agency and two magazines and detained at least 23 employees on suspicion of links with armed Kurdish rebels–Kurdish sources said.
Police obtained court permission to search the Istanbul office of the Dicle news agency and said the operation was part of security measures ahead of the NATO summit in the city on June 28-29–the secretary of the agency told AFP by telephone.
"They also said that people here are suspected of being linked to the PKK," she said–referring to the separatist Kurdistan Workers’ Party–which this month announced the end to a five-year unilateral cease-fire with the government.
The pro-Kurdish Democratic People’s Party (DEHAP) said police also searched the offices of two small pro-Kurdish monthly magazines–Ozgur Halk and Genc Bakis.
They were also suspected of having links with the PKK–DEHAP spokesman Kemal Avci told AFP.
DEHAP issued a statement condemning the raids and accusing the government of insincerity in democratization efforts aimed at bringing Turkey closer to the European Union.