30 April 2008 /TODAY’S ZAMAN
Democratic Society Party (DTP) parliamentary group chairman Ahmet Türk said on Tuesday his party will not take part in parliamentary sessions for an unspecified period of time to protest an attack on a DTP festival in Sakarya on Sunday. Members of Alperen Ocakları, the youth branch of the Grand Unity Party (BBP), allegedly perpetrated the attack.
Speaking to DTP deputies during a meeting of the party's parliamentary group, Türk said: "With this latest attack, part of a lynching campaign against our party, they gave the message that they will not let us live in this country, let alone devise policies for our people. In Sakarya they attempted to organize a massacre similar previous events in Sivas, Mara? and Çorum," he said, referring to incidents in which large numbers of people were killed preceding the 1980 coup d'état in Turkey. "While 500 members of our party, including Şanlıurfa deputy İbrahim Binici, were gathered in a wedding hall on Sunday, a group of ultranationalists attacked them. These people were under siege in the hall for five hours, and the ultranationalist group outside continued attacking."
Türk reminded the DTP deputies that Ebubekir Kalkan, one of the people in the hall, died of a heart attack during the attack, adding that the hall's occupants were evacuated under police escort.