Tuesday, July 24, 2007

First Pro-Kurdish MPs in Ankara for 16 years

Some twenty (some sources say 24) Kurdish MPs were elected to the Turkish parliament, some of them with ties to the violent PKK (Kurdish Workers' Party) guerrilla group. For the Kurds to have representation at this level is unprecedented since the early 1990s, and could be a positive development. They will face a lot of hostility from Turkey's far rightwing nationalist party, which also gained seats for the first time in a while.

What this article does not say is that 100 of the Justice and Development Party's (AKP) members of parliament are of Kurdish heritage.

Video from Euronews.

4 comments:

Christiane said...

What this article does not say is that 100 of the Justice and Development Party's (AKP) members of parliament are of Kurdish heritage.

Well, I find this data of 100 seats in the AKP somewhat surprising. What is your source ? If you add these 100 seats in the AKP to the 24 of the Kurdish party, this amounts to 124 seats out of 550 in total (aka 22.5%). Now, the Kurds are said to represent between 15 and 20% of the population (UN source) or 20% (CIA Wolrd fact books). Given the fact that the Kurds are an oppressed minority in Turkey (less access to wealth and education, etc.) I find this data somewhat surprising, even if a) they were elected by the population and b) Turkey had to make reforms in order to candidate itself to the EU.

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