Demirtaş: We Will Create Model Cities / ELECTION CAMPAIGN PROMISES IN TURKEY

13-1-2014 – Özgür Gündem – Tens of thousands have attended election rallies for the the Peace and Democracy Party, or BDP, in Konya, Mêrdîn and Agirî. Selahattin Demirtaş, the co-president of BDP, spoke at a rally in Kulu, a district in the north of Konya province which is home to a large Kurdish population. Demirtaş told those gathered at the rally that “by taking Cihanbeyli and Kulu we will create cities that are models for brotherhood between peoples.”

Demirtaş was met during his visit by local BDP candidates and party officials, as well as hundreds of supporters who came to greet him. While in Kulu the visiting BDP delegation attended the opening of local election office, before attending similar events in the nearby districts of Cihanbeyli and Yencioba. Demirtaş, speaking during the visit, said “As the BDP we make it clear that everywhere we go we build our projects around unity and togetherness. Kulu is an example of this. Here different communities are living amongst each other. We want the pattern that exists in Kulu and Cihanbeyli to be the case in the whole of Turkey. The Xelikan (Gölyazı) municipality has already been onboard with us. The work of the BDP is there for anyone to see. And I congratulate them on their work.”

‘The mask of the AKP has fallen’

 Demirtaş went on to urge everyone to work together as the elections approached, saying “working day and night we will all dance the halay of brotherhood here on the evening of March 30th. Despite all obstacles the municipalities are working at full speed. With an understanding based on local, autonomous government we will all run our municipality together. BDP municipalities put money to use for the people. But what you use it for and the corruption you engage in is out in the open. After all this corruption the AKP is fighting against everything and think they are engaging in a “clean-hands operation.” But we know that it isn’t like that. The AKP and the Hizmet movement (Cemaat) have been working together for decades, and now they are blaming each other. The PM says that he does not trust this investigation. However thousands of blameless sons and daughters of the people are in prison because of investigations. The people no longer believe them. Their mask has fallen off.”

‘We have a responsibility to the people’

Speaking the day before at a solidarity dinner hosted by the BDP Êlih (Batman) Provincial Office – where he was joined by BDP Mayoral Candidate for Mêrdîn Ahmet Türk , BDP MP Ayla Akat Ata and representatives for civil society organizations – Demirtaş told those in attendance that “We have come from days in which were not counted as people in the Middle East and in our home lands to a day in which the status of Kurdistan is being debated. Was this then a favor? Did all of this happen because of the AKP’s democracy packages? It happened because countless many people whose names we do not even know paid a heavy price. Owing to them we have become the biggest people’s movement in the world. The moment we forget those values which have brought us existence, will be the moment we lose track of the line they have drawn for us. The people do not only expect service from us. The people expect at the same time that we will respect their values. This is the secret of this party’s success. While President Apo is still not free and cannot go among the people we have a responsibility to this people.”

(This article originally appeared in Turkish in Özgür Gündem)