International observers attending the trial in Ankara
International observers attending the trial in Ankara

Various organizations from around the world attend the trial of 108 members of the Kurdinsh HDP party in Ankara as international observers

On Monday, the Esquerra Republicana delegation, which included the Member of the Spanish Congress Marta Rosique and Barcelona City Councillor Max Zañartu, attended the opening of the trial against several members of the Kurdish Democratic People's Party (HDP) in Ankara, the Turkish capital, for the so-called “Kobani Case.” Mr Zañartu and Ms Rosique joined other representatives of organizations from around the world who also attended the trial as international observers.

Marta Rosique said “Today, we have acted as international observers at a trial whose real intention is to criminalize the Kurdish movement and solidarity with Kobani, and as an excuse to outlaw the HDP party.” She added that “We are talking about the condemnation of the third largest party in the Turkish parliament. This shows that the Turkish government intends to finish off its most direct opposition.” In addition, Ms Rosique went on to accuse the Spanish government of complicity “at a time when it is forging alliances with the dictatorial Turkish government. The Kurdish people and the Catalan people must come together in a show of international solidarity.”

For his part, Barcelona councillor Max Zañartu said that “we are once again facing a political trial, this case in Turkey, which criminalizes the Kurds in northern Syria who fought and defeated the Islamic State” while expressing solidarity with that people: “In the Catalan-speaking Countries we can do nothing but reiterate our support for the Kurdish people, the HDP, and to raise awareness of the situation in Turkey.”

108 members of the HDP have been accused by the Turkish authorities of having promoted the protests that took place in 2014 against the passivity of the Turkish army in the face of the Islamic State attack on the Kurdish city of Kobani in Syria, on the border with Turkey. Dozens of protesters were killed during the protests. The defendants face 37 charges of murder and breach of the unity and territorial integrity of the Turkish state, accusations flatly denied by the HDP.

Last December, the European Court of Human Rights ruled Turkey should release former HDP co-chair and candidate in the 2014 presidential election Selahattin Demirtaş, finding that several articles of the European Convention on Human Rights had been breached with his arrest.