Kurdish party leader accuses Turkey 'mafia state' over bombings

AFP , Saturday 10 Oct 2015

People surround the area where bodies of victims are covered with flags and banners at the site of an explosion in Ankara, Turkey, Saturday, Oct. 10, 2015 (AP)

The leader of Turkey's main pro-Kurdish party on Saturday blamed a "mafia state" in the country over a twin explosion in the capital Ankara that killed 30 people as they gathered for a peace march.

"We are faced with a huge massacre. A vicious, barbaric attack has been committed," Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) leader Selahattin Demirtas told reporters in Ankara.

"We are faced with a murderous state which has turned into a mafia and a state mentality which acts like a serial killer," Demirtas said.

At least 30 people were killed and 126 wounded when twin explosions targeted activists who had gathered outside Ankara's main train station for a peace rally organised by leftist and pro-Kurdish opposition groups.

An AFP photographer saw victims lying in pools of blood and body parts scattered across the ground, with some covered by HDP flags and banners.

Demirtas said the attack was a repeat of a bombing of an HDP rally in the southeastern city of Diyarbakir ahead of June 7 elections and a July suicide bombing blamed on Islamic State (IS) jihadists in the town of Suruc that killed scores of pro-Kurdish activists.

"Is it possible that a state with such a strong intelligence network did not have prior information on the attack?" Demirtas said.

"It's a continuation of the type of attacks in Diyarbakir and Suruc. Is it possible that it (the state) didn't have any information in Suruc, Diyarbakir?" he asked.

"Such a tyrannical government will never be able to make its mark on history. We will not allow it," he said.

The attack comes at a tense time in Turkey as the country prepares to hold snap elections on November 1, following June polls in which President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's party lost its overall majority after HDP's major gains.

The bombing of the HDP rally in Diyarbakir killed four people while the suicide bombing in Suruc left 32 pro-Kurdish activists dead and hundred others wounded.

Demirtas said his party had cancelled all election programmess, saying: "The peace of our society is more important than the elections."

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