The 80 – of 550 – seats the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) picked up in Turkey’s parliamentary elections on Sunday marks a huge victory.
As well as smashing President Erdogan’s bid for greater presidential powers it also, for the first time, gives parliamentary representation to a party speaking for the nation’s Kurds, who make up about 20 percent of the population.
But the HDP leader, Selahattin Demirtas, says he wants to represent all people:
“This is a joint victory of all the oppressed – Turks, Kurds, Arabs, Caucasians, Armenians and Bosniaks, Alawites, Sunnis, Christians, Jews, Yazidis, all of the discriminated that want to live free with their beliefs.”
The HDP was established in 2012 and it is the continuation of several Kurdish Parties which have now joined with leftist groups, minorities, Gezi Park groups and arch-rivals of the president.