A BDP deputy, Şerafettin Elçi, announced the decision on Thursday. “We will not go to Parliament until a concrete step is taken to eliminate this injustice and pave the way for democratic politics,” he said. The group also called on the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government to return the “stolen parliamentary seat” to the BDP. A candidate from the AK Party was approved as deputy by the YSK I place of Dicle.
Aysel Tuğluk also told reporters after the meeting that they made the decision to boycott not only because of the Hatip Dicle case but due to the fact that five other BDP deputies are jailed as well. When asked by a CNN Türk reporter as to when they would end their boycott, Tuğluk said they would enter Parliament when the jailed deputies were freed and allowed to enter Parliament. She added that the responsibility falls on the government to make gestures that will serve peace and democracy.
A total of 36 independent deputies supported by the BDP were elected in the June 12 elections, and they were expected to form a group in Parliament under the BDP. However, six of the BDP-sponsored deputies are under arrest as part of the Kurdish Communities Union (KCK) trial. The Supreme Election Board (YSK) voted unanimously on Tuesday night to strip Dicle, one the six jailed deputies, of his deputyship over his earlier separate terrorism-related conviction, which led to outrage among the pro-Kurdish party and its supporters.
The group convened on Thursday in Diyarbakır to draw a road map following the YSK decision and decided to boycott Parliament. The decision will signal by-elections if the independents resign en masse. By-elections can be held once every election term and cannot be held before 30 months have passed since the latest general elections. However, in cases where the number of vacant seats in Parliament reaches 5 percent of the total number of seats, 28 deputies in other words, by-elections shall be held within three months.
The pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Congress (DTK), which is known to be affiliated with the BDP, on Wednesday called on the party to boycott Parliament. The congress released a declaration consisting of recommendations for the BDP and Turkish politicians to overcome the crisis and said they do not recognize the YSK decision as Dicle is the candidate who received the highest number of votes in Diyarbakır and called on the BDP to announce that its deputies will not enter Parliament in protest of the YSK ruling.
The group's declaration argued that the state and the government also have a share in the YSK ruling and that the ruling AK Party government is responsible for the chaos that the country is heading towards. They also called on the government and the main opposition to take action on the issue and urged the YSK to reverse its decision.