DAILY NEWS photo, Selahattin SÖNMEZ – 13.8.2012 – Suspected members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) kidnapped a deputy from the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) last night.
CHP Tunceli deputy Hüseyin Aygün was returning from a visit to Ovacık district of the eastern province of Tunceli when PKK militants stopped his vehicle at around 7 p.m., broadcaster CNNTürk reported. One journalist and one aide who were traveling with Aygün tried to convince the militants to set the deputy free but they refused to comply, saying they would “keep Aygün for a few days.” The PKK members then took Aygün with them into a wooded area, disappearing from sight, Doğan news agency reported. CHP spokesperson Haluk Koç said it was the first time the PKK kidnapped an elected deputy and said it was time for politicians to stop placing the blame at each other and act together. “It is enough,” Koç told CNN Türk.
It was reported that Aygün anounced his visit to Ovacık on his Facebook page prior to the event. Intelligence officials said this fact might have contributed to the lawmaker’s kidnapping. The Tunceli Governor’s Office has set up a crisis center to direct efforts to rescue Aygün.