DIYARBAKIR, Turkey

A total of 42 suspects were arrested in Turkey on Friday over alleged links to the terrorist group PKK, including former mayors of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP).

The arrests were made following security forces’ raids in the provinces of Diyarbakir, Istanbul, Izmir, Batman and Sanliurfa after judicial authorities issued arrest warrants for 64 suspects.

The warrants were issued in line with an investigation launched by prosecutors in the southeastern province of Diyarbakir based on names listed in organizational documents of the Democratic Society Congress (DTK), a group linked to the terrorist PKK.

Among those arrested are Mehmet Demir and Naside Toprak, suspended HDP mayors, and other HDP provincial and district officials.

The HDP has also been accused by Turkey’s governments of links to the terrorist PKK.

Security forces are seeking the remaining suspects.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK – listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the US, and EU – has been responsible for the deaths of 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.

*Writing by Ali Murat Alhas

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