Turkey’s opposition should unite to expose secretive structures supporting President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s government, the jailed former leader of the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Selahattin Demirtaş said on Thursday.
Writing for online news outlet Duvar from Edirne maximum security prison, Demirtaş called on opposition parties to do more to reveal the connections between economic, media, and academic networks linked to the Erdoğan administration.
“Through these structures, direct interventions are made in politics, elections and the judiciary in an effort to consolidate the power of the government,” Demirtaş said.
The same structures also operate through social media, he said.
Demirtaş was detained on Nov. 4, 2016 over alleged links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a militant group engaged in an internal conflict with Turkey since 1984.
The European Court of Human Rights has repeatedly called for Demirtaş’ immediate release, ruling that his rights to freedom of expression and liberty have been violated.
Demirtaş said pro-government structures were benefiting from significant amounts of public money provided by foundations or local municipalities through undercover financing.
A system was also in place to distribute important job posts and positions, he added.
“I hope the matter will be approached with seriousness and determination. Otherwise, it might be too late,” Demirtaş said.