Incredible scenes in the Turkish parliament

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By Catherine Hardy  with AFP
Incredible scenes in the Turkish parliament

Punching, pushing and shoving

There have been scuffles between politicians in the Turkish parliament for the second time in a week.

The meeting of the constitutional commission, which had already been postponed from last Thursday due to fighting, was held to discuss lifting lawmakers’ immunity from prosecution.

Dozens of members of the governing AK Party and the pro-Kurdish opposition party the HDP shoved, punched and kicked each other as the heated discussion descended into violence.

Similar clashes in parliament last week delayed efforts to pass legislation on a migration deal with the EU.

What happened last week?

Deputies threw punches, pushed, slapped and scuffled with each other in the assembly late last Wednesday.

Footage shot by Mahmut Tanal, a member of Turkey’s main opposition Party (CHP) showed deputies shoving and jostling each other.

What prompted last week’s disagreement?

The row was sparked by discussions over military operations targeting Kurdish militants in Turkey’s largely Kurdish southeast.

The fierce exchanges erupted after MP Ferhat Encu from the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP) referred to the deaths of civilians in military operations against Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) mlitants in the southeast.