A Federal Foreign Office Spokesperson issued the following statement today (18 March) on the proceedings to ban the opposition party HDP in Turkey:
The Federal Government views the initiation of proceedings against the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) by the Turkish Prosecutor General with great concern. Banning a political party can only be the very last resort in a democracy. The case of the HDP raises considerable doubts as regards proportionality. At the end of the day, democratic decision-making processes require the legitimate representation of the opinions and interests of all citizens. A vibrant opposition is an integral part of this. We will therefore be watching further steps taken in this matter very closely.
Yesterday’s withdrawal of Ömer Faruk Gergerlioğlu’s parliamentary mandate and the criminal proceedings against numerous other parliamentarians and members of the HDP are likewise part of a development that calls the rule of law in Turkey into question. The Federal Government calls on Turkey to comply with the most stringent democratic and rule-of-law standards, which it has pledged to uphold as a member of the Council of Europe and as an EU accession candidate. We call on the HDP to clearly distance itself from the PKK, which is listed as a terrorist organisation also in the EU.