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Kurdish politician who praised PKK leader sentenced to 20 months in jail

(BIANET/IFEX) - The Diyarbakir 4th High Criminal Court recently sentenced Kurdish politician Hatip Dicle to 20 months in prison for praising Abdullah Ocalan, the imprisoned leader of the outlawed Kurdistan Wokers Party (PKK). Dicle is a former deputy of the dissolved Democracy Party (DEP) and the former co-chair of the Democratic Society Congress (DTK).

The court convicted Dicle under article 7/2 of the Anti-Terror Law (TMY) for "spreading propaganda for a terrorist organization". He is one of the defendants who is being tried as part of the case agains the Democratic Confederation of Kurdistan (KCK), Turkey Assembly. The KCK is the umbrella organization that includes the PKK.

Dicle was represented by his lawyer Feride Lacin in the hearing on 28 October.

In an interview with BIANET, Lacin explained that her client was being tried as part of the KCK case because of opinions on the Kurdish question that he voiced in public in Bingöl (south-eastern Turkey) in 2009, as well as based on his prior activities. "We think it is a breach of law to prosecute a defendant over the same activities in two separate cases. We will appeal as soon as the full decision is issued."

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