Gunman attacks HDP offices in Marmaris
A man in the town of Marmaris in the Turkish Riviera opened fire on the district offices of the pro-Kurdish Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) offices with a shotgun on Wednesday morning, Mezopotamya Agency reported.

The attacker, 28-year-old A.T.D., arrived at the building at 06:00 local time, firing several rounds of bullets into the building that was empty at the time. There were no casualties or injuries, but the building suffered material damages.

 “We know the perpetrators. No vile attack can stop our march towards peace and freedom!” a sister organization to the HDP, the Peoples’ Democratic Congress (HDK), said in a tweet following the attack.

HDP’s Marmaris Co-chair Guven Goknar told Mezopotamya that the attacker broke windows and damaged the furniture inside. Police arrived at the scene upon neighbors' complaints and took the man into custody, he said.

 “People have said the attacker had mental issues. Do all the mentally disturbed run into the HDP to attack? This was a deliberate fascistic attack,” Mezopotamya cited Goknar as saying.

HDP’s Marmaris offices had suffered another attack back in 2018, according to the co-chair, who said the ones responsible for both attacks were “those who point the finger at our party”.

Huda Kaya, Istanbul deputy for the HDP, pointed to “the governing parties that have ceased to be political parties and turned into criminal organizations” for responsibility, Mezopotamya reported.

Kaya said the government wished to “instill an atmosphere of fear”, similar to the summer of 2015. “We are once again faced with the reality that the government feeds solely off of fear and hate to continue its existence today,” Kaya said.

In general elections held in June 2015, the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) had lost its parliamentary supermajority for the first time since it came to power in 2002. AKP called for new elections for November of the same year, following a summer of unrest with a peace process to resolve Turkey’s Kurdish issue failing and several ISIS bombings claiming hundreds of civilians’ lives.

On June 17 this year, a gunman attacked HDP’s offices in Izmir, killing party volunteer Deniz Poyraz. The attacker, one Onur Gencer, told authorities under custody that he “would have shot others too”, as HDP officials revealed that a large-scale meeting had been planned for the time of the attack only to be postponed at the last minute over technical issues.

One day before the Marmaris attack, on July 13, the local HDP co-chair for Istanbul’s Avcilar district Semseddin Duman was threatened by persons who introduced themselves as police officers, Mezopotamya reported. Shortly after the threats, unidentified gunmen opened fire on Duman’s home. The co-chair and his family were unharmed.

The attacks “aim to terrorize our party and prevent us from coming together with other opposition groups”, Huda Kaya said.

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