Prosecutors in Turkey seek to strip several MPs, including Armenian Garo Paylan, of immunity

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https://en.armradio.am-Siranush Ghazanchyan

The Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Office has prepared summaries of proceedings for nine lawmakers from the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), seeking the lift of their legislative immunities, Bianet reports.

The HDP lawmakers, along with 99 other defendants, are facing aggravated life sentences for having allegedly organized the deadly “Kobane protests” in Kurdish-majority cities in October 2014.

The summaries of proceedings have been sent to the Ministry of Justice to be submitted to the parliament for a vote after being reviewed in relevant committees.

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and its ally Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) have the parliamentary majority to approve the summaries of proceedings.

HDP Co-Chair Pervin Buldan, its parliamentary group deputy chairs Meral Danış-Beştaş and Saruhan Oluç, and Garo Paylan, Hüda Kaya, Sezai Temelli, Pero Dundar, Fatma Kurtulan and Serpil Kemalbay-Pekgözegü are the MPs that the investigation concerns.

Dozens of HDP politicians were detained on September 25 after the investigation was launched and 17 of them were later remanded in custody.

The indictment charging the suspects with 25 different offenses, including “managing a terrorist organization” and “attempted overthrow,” was accepted on January 7.

The protests in question began in late September 2014 when ISIS launched an offensive to take over Kobane, a Kurdish town in northern Syria. Incidents between different protesting groups and the police response to protesters turned violent from October 6, resulting in the deaths of  42 people.

While the government has accused the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) of orchestrating the protests and held it responsible for the losses, the party says most of the killed were its supporters and the incidents have not been effectively investigated.

Several senior HDP politicians had been previously investigated over the incidents but none of them received a sentence.

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