ISTANBUL—Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Member of Parliament representing Istanbul, Garo Palyan, spoke to Agos recently after the results of Sunday’s parliamentary elections in Turkey were announced.
Paylan said that they had expected to win 11-13% of the votes, and that the results were not a surprise.
Paylan stated that the HDP’s victory had come as a result of four years of hard work, and said: “We founded the HDP in 2011. During the 2-year foundation period, all identities and all democratic groups came together. Our party includes all identities, and we stand for equality. We are also aware that this has not been attempted in politics in Turkey before. Ours is a discourse of radical democracy with no ‘if’s and ‘but’s.”
Being one of the three new Armenian members of parliament elected, Paylan explained his goals as follows: “It’s not having three Armenian MPs in Parliament that matters, it’s what they will say and do. My party will stand out with its policy based on equality. The AKP also has Kurdish MPs but we have not witnessed an egalitarian approach from them. All other parties need to show more effort on this matter. It was this discourse that brought us success, I wish other parties can see that politics in Turkey can change.”