Pro-Kurdish HDP files complaint against interior minister

The pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democracy Party (HDP) has filed a criminal complaint against Interior Minister Efkan Ala on accusations that the minister abused his authority by not allowing the party to freely carry out an election campaign in the March 30 local polls.

The complaint was recently filed at the Mersin Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office. In their complaint, HDP officials accused Ala of neglecting his duty, abusing his authority and working to incite hatred and enmity among the people. According to the HDP officials, the interior minister did not allow the HDP to carry out an election campaign for the March 30 municipal elections in a free atmosphere.

The complaint also included some officials in the police force and at the Interior Ministry.

Election offices of the HDP, including those in the Fethiye district of Mugla and Urla district of İzmir, as well as their offices in Ordu, Giresun and Aksaray provinces, were attacked ahead of March 30. Assailants broke the offices’ windows and set the party’s signs ablaze. Dozens of people were taken into custody in connection with the events.

According to the HDP, Interior Minister Ala did not take the required measures to protect the party’s election offices and allow the party to carry out a free election campaign. HDP officials argued in their complaint that they had tried to talk to the minister about the lack of security for HDP members and buildings with the interior minister, but that the minister did not respond.

In their petition, the HDP officials also argued that assailants discussed plans to attack election offices of the pro-Kurdish party on social media websites beforehand, but the Interior Ministry and the police did not take measures to prevent the attacks. “The attacks on our election offices were expected and people just watched them. Interior Minister Ala is the number one [person] responsible for the attacks. The minister, officials at the Interior Ministry and the police neglected their duties by not working to prevent the attacks,” the document read.