Fırat Keser, a Kurdish politician from the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), has been sentenced to 7 years and 6 months in prison over links to a “terrorist” organization, Mezopotamya news agency reported.
According to the report, Keser was charged by the Aydın 2nd High Criminal Court of having membership in the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
Turkey has long been undertaking counter-terrorism operations against the PKK which seeks Kurdish autonomy in armed struggle. The PKK cost lives of tens of thousands of soldiers and civilians in its nearly 40 year-old history.
The HDP has been one of the main targets of Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) since a coup attempt in July 2016, following which the government launched a massive crackdown on its opponents under the pretext of an anti-coup fight. According to an HDP report released in December 2020, 16 former deputies including the party’s former co-chairpersons Selahattin Demirtaş and Figen Yüksekdağ as well as one current deputy are in currently in jail on terrorism charges.