Turkish politics: West slams arrests of Kurdish lawmakers in Turkey - Reuters

12:38 Nov. 5, 2016

West slams arrests of Kurdish lawmakers in Turkey - Reuters

Police Disperse Supporters Of The Pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party, Ankara, November 4 (GettyImages Photo)

Hours after the arrests a car bomb killed nine people in the city where some of the lawmakers were being held

Turkish authorities arrested the leaders of the country's main pro-Kurdish opposition party in a terrorism investigation on Friday, drawing strong international condemnation of a widening crackdown on dissent under President Tayyip Erdogan.

Selahattin Demirtas and Figen Yuksekdag, co-leaders of the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), were jailed pending trial after being held in overnight raids, officials said. Ten other HDP lawmakers have also been detained, although some were released later .

The arrest of elected members of the Turkish parliament's third largest party, and the detention or suspension of more than 110,000 officials since a failed coup in July, may "go beyond what is permissible", the U.N. human rights office said.

The United States expressed deep concern, while Germany and Denmark summoned Turkish diplomats over the Kurdish detentions, and European Parliament President Martin Schulz said the actions "call into question the basis for the sustainable relationship between the EU and Turkey".

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