Turks demonstrate in Istanbul, urging solving Kurdish issue

08:37, July 22, 2011      

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Thousands of Turks took to the streets of Turkey's largest city of Istanbul Thursday evening, calling for an end to violence and a solution to the Kurdish issue.

The people marched down the city's Istiklal Avenue, shouting that the time has come to end conflict, referring to the Kurdish issue. The rally was held after 13 Turkish soldiers were killed on July 14 by members of the outlawed Kurdish Workers' Party (PKK) in the southeastern province of Diyarbakir.

"We want peace. We have to stand up for our people, intellectuals and academics," said Levent Tuzel, having been elected as an independent member of the parliament. He added " peace has to win."

Tuzel is one of the 36 independent members of the parliament who refuse to take oath until the ban on one of their elected colleagues is lifted.

"All we want is peace. The community has to do something to help bring it about," said Cengiz Algan, a participant of the march.

Hatip Dicle, from the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party ( BDP), was barred from entering the parliament following the June 12 elections for a previous conviction on charges of engaging in terrorist propaganda.

Last week, a singer was forced off the stage during a concert in Istanbul when she started singing in Kurdish.

Listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the United States and the European Union, the PKK took up arms in 1984 to create an ethnic homeland in southeastern Turkey. Some 40,000 people have been killed in conflicts involving the PKK for the past over two decades.

Source:Xinhua
 
 
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