Kurdish Leader Goes on Trial in Turkey Facing 142 Years in Jail

In first hearing over a year Turkey court extends Kurdish leader's imprisonment

The trial on terrorism charges of Selahattin Demirtas, the leader of Turkey's main pro-Kurdish party, began in Ankara on Thursday, without the defendant in the courtroom.

Although 1,250 attorneys have come forward volunteering to defend Demirtas, HDP said the authorities have chosen a courtroom with only about 20 seats, which they said limits Demirtas's right to defence in the trial, where worldwide observers from about a dozen countries are expected to attend. The court judges also refused to allow global and local observers to attend the hearing.

In a 500 page indictment, Demirtas is accused of leading a terrorist organization, spreading terrorist propaganda, and inciting hate and crime.

Lawyers say there are a total of 31 different summaries of proceedings included in the case, including a number of speeches DemirtaƟ delivered on separate occasions.

The trial has become a focal point of criticism over the government's crackdown after last year's failed coup and the introduction of emergency rule. He faces up to 142 years in jail. The trial has adjourned until February and the judges ruled Demirtas will remain in prison.

The government alleges the HDP, which remains legal, has links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), an armed group.

Related:

Comments

Latest news

Zardari demands resignations of Shehbaz Sharif, Rana Sana after Tahirul Qadri meeting
The two sides held a meeting wherein Khurram Nawaz Gandapur, Manzoor Wattoo and Qamar Zaman Kaira were also in presence. Qadri and Asif Zardari - as the cleric is widely known for his past statements against the PPP leader.

White House: Trump's throat 'was dry'
Trump, I can state unequivocally, will be the healthiest individual ever elected to presidency ", the doctor declared. Former President Obama's first health report was made public on February 28, 2010.

M&S launch stoneless avocados - and says they could prevent 'avocado hand'
The cocktail avocados are small elongated fruits , measuring around five to eight centimetres in length. The fruit develops without a seed which in turns stops the growth, giving a small, seedless fruit.

Pantone Color of the Year 2018 Is a 'Provocative and Thoughtful Purple'
For Ultra Violet, that could mean many things. "There is a sense of optimism and confidence in this color", Murphy said . It claims that Ultra Violet is already being put to use by a range of innovative tech and business companies.

Flu virus now widespread in Georgia
Flu shots are available throughout Chatham-Kent from a family healthcare provider, walk-in clinic or many local pharmacies. Compared to this time past year , experts say there are double the number of confirmed cases of the flu.

Other news