Turkey to ban use of 'Kurdistan', 'Kurdish city' and 'Armenian genocide' in parliament

HDP members of Turkey's parliament. Photo via Kurdish Question.

The Turkish government has proposed a new law which will ban the use of the words and terms “Kurdistan”, “Kurdish city/cities” and “Armenian Genocide” in parliament.

Parliamentarians who use these words or terms will be fined 12,000 Turkish liras (about $4500) and be banned from participating in three sessions in the Grand Assembly.

Carrying placards, which opposition parties often do to criticise the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government, will also be banned.

The new law is expected to be passed with support from the AKP and the far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP). The parties entered a de-facto coalition after last year’s coup attempt, which was followed by the silencing of opposition forces, including the media.

The words and terms being banned tend to only be used by the left-wing Kurdish-led Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP). The move has been viewed as another step in oppressing the party.

At least 12 HDP lawmakers have been jailed since November, including the party's co-leader Selahattin Demirtas. The government has also seized control of more than 80 Kurdish-administered municipalities and jailed at least 8000 Kurdish and pro-Kurdish rights activists.

[Reprinted from Kurdish Question.]

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