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Turkish-Armenian lawmaker under probe for “insulting Turkishness”

Turkish-Armenian lawmaker under probe for “insulting Turkishness”

PanARMENIAN.Net - Turkish-Armenian lawmaker from the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) Garo Paylan is under investigation for “insulting the Turkish President, the Turkish people or Turkishness,” Agos newspaper says.

The Justice Ministry of Turkey granted permission for the Ankara Prosecutor’s office to conduct an investigation over an interview Paylan gave while visiting Canada.

In case the charges are confirmed, the member of the Grand National Assembly may be stripped of parliamentary immunity.

In the interview he gave on May 1, 2017, Paylan spoke about the Armenian Genocide, the murder of Turkish-Armenian editor Hrant Dink, the failed coup and the president Recep tayyip Erdogan’s policy.

The Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s office had prepared a summary of proceedings against seven other HDP deputies on the grounds of “insulting the Turkish nation, the Turkish state, its army and police forces,” “acting against the law on political parties,” “making terror propaganda,” and “insulting the president.”

Paylan has been vocal about the plight of Armenians in Turkey and the overall human rights situation in the country.

When in Canada in May 2017, the lawmaker held a series of meetings in Ottawa and Montreal with Members of Parliament and various current and former Canadian officials

He provided an overview of the current political climate in Turkey, the aftermath of the constitutional referendum and the ongoing uncertainty and concern regarding the rights and freedoms of the minorities living in Turkey. He stressed the importance of acknowledging history, specifically in regards to the Armenian Genocide, stating, “unpunished crimes lead to new crimes.”

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