Turkish deputy PM slams attack on pro-Kurdish politician
A caucus member of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party was stabbed Tuesday
Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Yalcin Akdogan has condemned a knife attack that wounded a caucus member of the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party, or HDP, on Tuesday.
Ahmet Karatas was stabbed at the party's Ankara headquarters by Emrah Akman.
Responding to questions from opposition party lawmakers in parliament Wednesday, Akdogan said that those who had "instigated" the attack must be caught.
"Our Interior Ministry is extremely sensitive on this issue," Akdogan added.
Akman, the man accused of stabbing the party official, told a court in Ankara on Wednesday he acted alone and was not following the orders of any person or group.
"I was acting on my own and no one encouraged me to attack him," Akman said.
Describing the incident as a "provocation," Akdogan said "we will not allow the [solution] process to be derailed by these provocations."
HDP co-leader Figen Yuksekdag has previously accused the government of fomenting enmity against the party, making it the target of attacks due to remarks of Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu.
The Turkish prime minister called Monday for the HDP to "act as a political party" in order to remain a part of "the solution process" -- the popular term for the Turkish government’s efforts launched early last year to secure an end to the decades-long conflict with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, which has claimed the lives of more than 40,000 people.
Turkey, the U.S. and EU list PKK as a terrorist organization.
The government has blamed the HDP for inciting recent pro-Kurdish violence in Turkey.
Last month, deadly protests left at least 38 civilians and two police officers dead, along with scores of damaged vehicles, state buildings, political party offices and shops across the country.
The demonstrations came after the HDP had issued a call via social media to take to the streets as a sign of solidarity with Syria's Kurdish-populated town of Kobani, the scene of a fierce battle between Kurdish armed groups and the militants of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant.
Last Modified: 2014-11-06 09:13:51
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