Peoples’ Democratic Party co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş spoke to thousands of people at a peace rally in the Kurdish city Batman on Sunday and responded to comments by Turkish PM Davutoğlu who while criticising the HDP accused Kurds of “collaborating with the Russians, like Armenian gangs.” Demirtas said, “What Davutoğlu is saying is that we will do to you what we did to Armenians in 1915. This is the mentality we are dealing with. He is threatening us with genocide.”
Touching on the Turkish state’s policy of denial and annihilation on Kurds Demirtaş stated, “The AKP and governments before it do not see the Kurds as a people. They imagine that the Kurds fell from space. They are trying to hide the fact that the Kurds are one of the most ancient people’s of this region. By doing this they have humiliated themselves. With policies that have nothing to do with politics and logic they have become the laughing stock of the world… Davutoğlu is finished politically. He will be remembered as a massacrer.”
The rally in Batman was the first in a series of peace rallies to be held in the run-up to Newroz, the Kurdish new year.