The mayors of Diyarbakir, Van and Mardin were elected with more than 50 per cent of the vote in local elections on 31 March 2019. Yet on 19 August, Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) announced it had removed them from office and appointed local governors in their place. Several government officials, including Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu, stated that the mayors needed to be replaced because they were misusing their positions to support terrorism, referring to the mayors’ alleged ties to the armed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).
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Podiumbouwer Maaike van Kempen made this website.