Gunman attacks HDP office in Izmir, kills employee

A Turkish police office stands outside HDO office in Izmir, June 17, 2021.

SULAIMANI (ESTA) — An armed man attacked the local office of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) in Izmir on Thursday, killing a woman who works for the party.

The HDP said in a statement that its Izmir provincial building was attacked by a gunman at around 10:30 a.m. (local time) in the city.

“The instigator and abettor of this brutal attack is the AKP-MHP government and the Interior Ministry, which constantly targets our party and our members,” it said, according to Reuters.

The gunman opened fire at the office and torched the building as party’s member Deniz Poyraz was inside, the HDP added.

The HDP said Poyraz was killed in the attack.

Meanwhile, Izmir Governor’s office said the assailant, a former health worker born in 1994, stormed the HDP office and shot Poyraz.

The HDP – Turkey’s third largest party – had recently come under intensified political pressure, with the nationalist allies of President Tayyip Erdogan’s AK Party (AKP) calling for it to be banned over alleged ties to the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK).

The HDP, which has 55 seats in the 600-member parliament, denies any links to the PKK.

A top prosecutor has opened a case to shutter the party, while its former leader and several hundred other party members are behind bars.

*This story was updated at 02:32 p.m. EBL time

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