Barcelona en Comú condemns detention of co-mayors of Dıyarbakir and calls for the restoration of local democracy in Turkey

Barcelona en Comú is extremely concerned by reports of the detention of the democratically elected co-mayors of Dıyarbakir, Gültan Kışanak and Firat Anlı and calls for their immediate release.

These are just the latest in a series of detentions of locally elected officials in Turkish Kurdistan over the past two months. In July, Turkey’s Municipal Law was ammended by decree to allow the removal of elected mayors and the seizure of local administrations by the central government. Indeed, 28 elected mayors were arrested in September and replaced by appointed trustees. Such actions are a clear violation of Article 4.4 of the European Charter of Local Self-Government, which was ratified by the Republic of Turkey in 1992.

Barcelona en Comú understands the detentions of mayors Kışanak and Anlı as part of a wave of repression by the Turkish government against local democracy in general, and the rights of the Kurdish people in particular, with the excuse of the failed military coup in July.

Peace and stability in the cities and regions of Turkey depend on the respect for local democracy and for the elected representatives of the people in municipal councils. No local administration should remain under the control of appointed bureaucrats indefinitely; free and fair elections must be held to guarantee democracy and human rights in Turkish Kurdistan.

Barcelona en Comú stands in solidarity with Dıyarbakir and the Kurdish people. “Resistance to persecution is a right”. #ZulmeKarşıDirenişHaktır