ISTANBUL, Jan. 14 (Xinhua) — More than 300 Kurds protested Saturday over the detention of 33 suspects in massive operations targeting the Kurdish Communities Union (KCK) in Turkey’s largest city of Istanbul and other cities.
Despite rain and snow, protesters gathered in Taksim Square, the center of Istanbul, shouting anti-government slogans in Kurdish and Turkish.
Angry Kurds, some from the KCK and some from the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), stopped shouting illegal slogans as the police threatened to use tear gas and water canon.
On Friday, the police found 6.9 kg of C-4 explosives in Istanbul’s Basaksehir district during the probing of KCK, a political umbrella organization that includes the outlawed Kurdish Workers’ Party (PKK).
Meanwhile, Istanbul Deputy Chief Public Prosecutor Fikret Sesen issued a statement on Friday over the operations against the KCK in several provinces, saying 123 premises were searched in 17 provinces and 33 of the 49 suspects were detained.
Among the raided premises were offices of the BDP, and the office of a member of the Confederation of Public Sector Trade Unions in the capital city of Ankara.
Initial reports listed the detainees including former BDP deputy Fatma Kurtulan, leader of the now defunct pro-Kurdish Democratic People’s Party Tuncer Bakirhan and Dicle News Agency reporter Murat Ciftvi.