News from the Revolution in Rojava and Wider Kurdistan
(ANF) Speaking in front of the BDP building in Ceylanpınar, which is currently under police blockade, a number of BDP and HDP officials have pledged to take the case of election fraud in Ceylanpınar to the European Court of Human Rights as well as to the Turkish Constitutional Court. The statement follows more than three days of unrest in the district following a disputed election on Sunday and widespread allegations of voting irregularities, threats and intimidation on the part of the ruling AKP.
The joint statement was made by HDP Urfa MP İbrahim Ayhan, BDP MP Ibrahim Binici, BDP General Co Vice-President Meral Danış Beştaş, and BDP Congress Member Sait Üçlü. The BDP and its supporters have accused the AKP of having stolen the election in Ceylanpınar and a number of other districts after evidence emerged of AKP employing voter intimidation and destroying ballots cast for the BDP.
Major unrest has gripped the town since the election, with soldiers, police and civilians with links to armed groups in Syria and hosted by local AKP candidate Menderes Atilla clashing with thousands of protesters. A state of emergency has been since declared throughout the entire district.
HDP Urfa MP Ayhan stressed the role of both AKP and the Turkish State in election fraud, saying “this is a state policy carried out by the AKP. The want to close Ceylanpınar to our party and our people.” He went on to point to the ongoing state oppression in the district, saying “the city is under a stage of siege by the police and military. The reason for this is to prevent the people from using their democratic rights [to protest] against the fraud that has been committed against the will of the people.”
Not Unrelated to Rojava
Ayhan also noted the connection between events in Ceylanpınar and Rojava across the border. Ceylanpınar is particularly sensitive as it sits directly on the Turkish-Syrian border across from Cizrê, the largest of three cantons of Rojava. The Turkish military and Turkish intelligence are reported to be using the district for a base of operations from which to support armed groups in the civil war in Syria. Drawing attention to this matter, Ayhan said “the policies that are being carried out [here] are not unrelated from Rojava. They want to turn Ceylanpınar in a base for their gangs. Our people are aware of this and will express their will.”