Ahmet Türk

Ahmet Türk (born 2 July 1942) is a Kurdish politician in Turkey and was born into a family of Kurdish clan and tribal chiefs in southeastern Turkey.[1]

Ahmet Türk
Mayor of Mardin
In office
30 March 2014  16 November 2016
Preceded bySüleyman Yıldız
Succeeded byMustafa Yaman
Leader of the Democratic Society Party
In office
17 August 2005  3 July 2007
Serving withAysel Tuğluk (until 25 June 2006)
Preceded byParty established
Succeeded byNurettin Demirtaş
Member of the Grand National Assembly
In office
22 July 2007  30 March 2014
ConstituencyMardin (2007, 2011)
In office
29 November 1987  24 December 1995
ConstituencyMardin (1987, 1991)
In office
14 October 1973  12 September 1980
ConstituencyMardin (1973, 1977)
Personal details
Born (1942-07-02) 2 July 1942
Derik, Mardin Province, Turkey
Other political
Democratic Society Party (DTP)

He was elected MP for the Democratic Party (DEP) in 1973. Later he resigned and joined the Republican People`s Party. Following the military coup in 1980, he was removed from parliament,[2] arrested and sent to Diyarbakir Prison[3] for 22 months.[2] After his release he was active in different left parties. In 1987[4] he was elected to parliament as a representative of Mardin on behalf of the Social Democratic Populist Party but got expelled from the party in 1989 for attending a Kurdish Conference in Brussels.[2] Following he joined the newly founded Peoples Labor Party.[5] It hindered the SHP not to renew an electoral alliance and in 1991 he was re-elected to parliament.[6] His immunity was lifted in March 1994[7] and sent to prison for terror charges. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison.[8] He appealed and was released on the 27 October 1995.[9] Türk was the chairman of the former pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party (DTP) in Turkey and was a member of the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. On 26 February 2007 Türk, as acting president of the DTP was sentenced together with vice-president Sebahat Tuncel to 18 months imprisonment for having used the Kurdish language in a leaflet of the DTP women wing, for the International Women`s Day on 8 March. Then on 6 March 2007 he was convicted to 6 months imprisonment for calling Abdullah Öcalan "Mister" (Sayin), this sentence got suspended.[10] He was elected MP to the Turkish Parliament for Mardin on the 22 July 2007.[11] On December 11, 2009, the Constitutional Court of Turkey voted to ban the DTP, accusing it of connection with the PKK.[12] Türk was expelled from the Grand National Assembly, and he and 36 other party members were banned from joining any political party for five years.[13]Türk appealed to the European Court of Human Rights and in 2016 Turkey was condemned to pay Türk 30`000€.[14] In April 2010 he was attacked by İsmail Çelik who beat him and broke his nose. Çelik first received a prison sentence of 11 months and 20 days which was later changed into a fine of 7000 Turkish Liras.[15] He has been described as "the most peaceful, most inclusive, most anti-violence, most moderate and wisest figure of the Kurdish political movement, and the one most likely to compromise."[1] In his aim to reconcile with the victims of the Genocide during World War I he has apologized to the Assyrian, Yazidi and Armenian population for the role of the Kurds in the genocide.[16]

In the 2014 local elections, Ahmet Türk was elected mayor of Mardin, associated with the Democratic Regions Party (DBP). However, on 21 November 2016 he was detained "on terror charges" after being dismissed from office by Turkish authorities, and a trustee appointed as mayor.[17] He was released on the 3 February 2017.[11] In the Turkish local elections 2019 he was reelected as mayor of Mardin. But in August 2019 he got dismissed again by the Interior Ministry due to accusations for supporting terrorism. The governor of Mardin was appointed as trustee.[18]


  1. "The final nail in the coffin of peace process in Turkey". Al-Monitor. 22 November 2016.
  2. Bilgin, Fevzi; Sarihan, Ali (20 June 2013). Understanding Turkey's Kurdish Question. Lexington Books. p. 136. ISBN 9780739184035.
  3. "Ahmet Türk arrested". Bianet. 25 November 2016. Retrieved 19 August 2019.
  4. "Mardin - 1987 Secim Sonuçları". www.secim-sonuclari.com. Retrieved 3 November 2019.
  5. Watts, Nicole F. (1 July 2011). Activists in Office: Kurdish Politics and Protest in Turkey. University of Washington Press. ISBN 9780295800820.
  6. "Mardin - 1991 Secim sonuçları". www.secim-sonuclari.com. Retrieved 3 November 2019.
  7. Olson, Robert W. (31 October 1996). The Kurdish Nationalist Movement in the 1990s: Its Impact on Turkey and the Middle East. University Press of Kentucky. pp. 40–41. ISBN 9780813108964.
  8. Gunes, Cengiz (11 January 2013). The Kurdish National Movement in Turkey: From Protest to Resistance. Routledge. p. 164. ISBN 9781136587986.
  9. "Human rights of parliamentarians". archive.ipu.org. Retrieved 8 November 2019.
  10. Turkey : Human Rights Concerns in the Lead up to July Parliamentary Elections. Human Rights Watch. p. 13.
  11. "Ahmet Türk Released". Bianet. 3 February 2017.
  12. "Turkish court bans pro-Kurd party". BBC News. 11 December 2009. Archived from the original on 20 April 2010. Retrieved 23 April 2010.
  13. Hacaoglu, Selcan (11 December 2009). "Turkey bans pro-Kurdish party over ties to rebels". Retrieved 11 December 2009.
  14. Kurdistan24. "Turkey condemned for banning Kurdish party". Kurdistan24. Retrieved 24 September 2019.
  15. "Turkish Intellectuals Who Have Recognized The Armenian Genocide: Ahmet Türk". Armenian News By MassisPost. 3 March 2016. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
  16. "Kurdish Leader Apologizes for Role in Genocide". Asbarez.com. 4 February 2013. Retrieved 1 January 2019.
  17. "Court arrests former Mardin mayor Ahmet Türk". Hurriyet Daily News. 24 November 2016. Retrieved 30 November 2016.
  18. Welle (www.dw.com), Deutsche. "Drei prokurdische Bürgermeister abgesetzt | DW | 19.08.2019". DW.COM (in German). Retrieved 19 August 2019.
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