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Turkey’s opposition party demands parliamentary inquiry into Suruc Massacre

Human Rights Politics

Turkey’s opposition party demands parliamentary inquiry into Suruc Massacre

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TURKEY’S opposition Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) demanded justice today for 33 young people killed in an Isis attack as they gathered to take toys across the border for children in Kobane, Syria, five years ago.

It called for a parliamentary inquiry into the massacre, which took place as members of the Socialist Party of the Oppressed (ESP) and its youth organisation the Socialist Youth Associations Federation (SGDF) held a press conference in the Suruc district of Urfa, close to the Syrian border, on July 20 2015.

It has long been held that the Turkish state intelligence services played a role in planning the attacks, covering for jihadists, with no effective investigations undertaken and nobody yet brought to justice.

“Although there were law-enforcement officers at the scene of the massacre in Suruc, [none] were present at the time of the incident,” a HDP statement said.

The party decried the lack of security measures. Cameras close to the site of the bombing did not work for three days and police blocked ambulances from attending to those injured in the blast.

Soon after the attack, jailed former HDP co-chair Figen Yuksekdag, also the former leader of the ESP, insisted that the bombing could not have taken place without the assistance of the Turkish state.

“No force can act in the Suruc area without the knowledge of the state or the MIT (National Intelligence Organisation),” she said.

On Friday, members of the Suruc Families Initiative who lost loved ones in the attack filed a criminal complaint against then prime minister Ahmet Davutoglu, who claimed last year to have information about those who carried out the attack, implying links to senior government officials.

The families want to see him charged with crimes against humanity, international killing, destruction, concealing or altering evidence, protecting an offender and reckless injury.

In a statement the ESP paid tribute to the 33 young people “immortalised” in the attack and held the ruling Justice & Development Party (AKP) and Isis responsible.

“This massacre is not a ‘few angry young people’ but a massacre directly planned by the state,” the party said.

It accused the government of trying “to eliminate the traces of the massacre and prevent the search for justice.”

Turkey’s Human Rights Association warned that chief suspect Yakup Sahin has not yet faced trial and that there was “definite evidence that the murderers have been supported by the state and are linked to [2015’s] October 10 Ankara massacre,” in which 108 people were killed in bomb blasts at a peace rally.

Both attacks occurred after the AKP lost its majority in the June 2015 Turkish parliamentary elections, with a fresh vote taking place in November of the same year.

Source: Star Morning Online

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