Turkey gives Kurdish MP Leyla Zana 10-year sentence
Published: 24th May 2012 14:21:06
A Turkish court has sentenced a high-profile Kurdish MP to 10 years in prison for spreading propaganda on behalf of the Kurdish People's Party (PKK) militant group.
The judge in the south-eastern town of Diyarbakir found Leyla Zana guilty of violating Turkey's anti-terror law.
As an MP she has immunity from prosecution. The sentence will not take effect until she leaves parliament.
The charges relate to nine speeches she gave between 2007 and 2008.
Mrs Zana is seen as a hero by many Kurds for her criticisms of Turkey's treatment of their community.
A previous conviction on the same charges in 2008 was overturned on appeal. Thursday's sentence is the result of a fresh trial for the same charges.
Mrs Zana is also accused of praising Abdullah Ocalan, the PKK leader who has been held in solitary confinement since his capture in 1999.
The PKK has been fighting the Turkish state for nearly 30 years and is listed as a terrorist group by Turkey, the United States and the European Union.
Mrs Zana, 51, became a leading campaigner for Kurdish prisoners in the 1990s. She was first elected to parliament in 1991, becoming Turkey's first woman Kurdish MP.
Back then, she caused an outcry in Turkey's parliament when she spoke Kurdish while taking the parliamentary oath.
She has already spent a decade in jail, between 1994 and 2004, for alleged links to the PKK.
Mrs Zana was elected again in June 2011, along with 35 other Kurdish-backed candidates.
Many Kurdish politicians, including Mrs Zana, have campaigned for political autonomy for Kurds in south-east Turkey.
About 40,000 people have been killed in the conflict between the Turkish state and PKK guerrillas, but in recent years the government has introduced some reforms to improve the rights of Kurds.
Mrs Zana has been nominated twice for the Nobel Peace Prize and was awarded the Andrei Sakharov prize for human rights in 1995.
At 07:00:12 in WalesCampaigners calling for a Cardiff reservoir to re-open will visit the prime minister to press their case to restore fishing and sailing there.
At 06:59:50 in EnglandA man and woman found dead in a Nottinghamshire house were stabbed, it has been confirmed.
At 06:56:53 in BusinessGeneral Motors has asked a US court to bar some lawsuits relating to its recall over faulty ignition switches.
At 06:55:04 in EnglandOne person has been arrested after three children were found dead at an address in south London.
At 06:38:57 in Northern IrelandThe Orange Order and a republican ex-prisoners' organisation have lent their support to a new course at Queen's University (QUB) that examines the use of public space to express identity.
At 06:36:03 in Northern IrelandTwo tributes to the late poet Seamus Heaney are to be held in Dublin later.
At 06:32:35 in EnglandA man has been charged following a fire at a house in Teesside.
At 06:16:09 in Northern IrelandAn ex-IRA man has made new allegations about Gerry Adams, in which he raises questions about the Sinn Féin leader's claim to have never been in the IRA.
At 06:11:26 in EnglandThe number of rats being reported by the public across Cornwall has increased by almost 50% in the past 12 months, council figures have revealed.
At 06:05:27 in EnglandSix historical buildings have been added to a register of "at risk" properties in Gloucester.
Harvard CitationBBC News, 2012. Turkey gives Kurdish MP Leyla Zana 10-year sentence [Online] (Updated 24th May 2012)
Available at: http://www.ukwirednews.com/news/1430738/Turkey-gives-Kurdish-MP-Leyla-Zana-10-year-sentence [Accessed 23rd Apr 2014]
News In Other Categories
Campaigners calling for a Cardiff reservoir to re-open will visit the prime minister to press their case to restore fishing and sailing there.
William Shakespeare is the UK's greatest cultural icon, according to the results of an international survey released to mark the 450th anniversary of his birth.
High food prices mean a third of UK adults are struggling to afford to eat healthily, warns a charity.
General Motors has asked a US court to bar some lawsuits relating to its recall over faulty ignition switches.
The Orange Order and a republican ex-prisoners' organisation have lent their support to a new course at Queen's University (QUB) that examines the use of public space to express identity.
Maconochie's stew was a household name during World War One. The tinned "meat and vegetable rations" were welcomed by some troops but others described them as a "man-killer". They also had an unfortunate side-effect.