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Corbyn thanks jailed Kurdish leader Demirtaş for letter of support ahead of UK election

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Former Labour Party leader and independent parliamentary candidate Jeremy Corbyn has expressed gratitude to Kurdish politician Selahattin Demirtaş, the former co-chair of Turkey’s Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), for his letter of support ahead of a general election in the UK slated for July 4.

Corbyn shared the message on X, along with photos of the letter in both Turkish and English.

“Thank you to Selahattin Demirtaş for your letter of support, written from the Turkish prison where you remain unjustly detained,” Corbyn tweeted. “The struggle for freedom, peace, and justice in Turkey — and around the globe — must prevail.”

Demirtaş’s letter, sent from Edirne Prison, extended best wishes to Corbyn for the upcoming general election.

“For the elections on the 4th of July, I wish you all the success and I believe that our friends in England will support you with all their strength. With the hope to meet in times of freedom,” Demirtaş wrote to Corbyn.

Demirtaş has been imprisoned since November 2016 on charges related to his political activities and speeches, which many international observers, including human rights organizations, have condemned as politically motivated.

In its 2020 ruling on Demirtaş, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) ordered his release and said his “unjustified” detention pursued the ulterior motive of stifling pluralism and limiting freedom of political debate in Turkey.

The Democracy in Europe Movement 2025 (DiEM25), a pan-European political movement that aims to draft a democratic constitution by 2025 that will replace all the European treaties that are in force today, has thrown its support behind Corbyn, Andrew Feinstein and other progressive candidates in the upcoming UK elections.

Expressing deep dissatisfaction with both major parties in a statement published on Monday, DiEM25 criticized the Conservative government for a decade of austerity that has led to deteriorating living standards and crumbling public services.

The movement also condemned Labour under Keir Starmer for its support of privatization, opposition to labor organizing and its stance on refugees and environmental issues. Additionally, DiEM25 highlighted “the ongoing genocide of Palestinians,” criticizing both Tories and Labour for their unwavering support of Israel and Labour’s suppression of criticism towards Israel.

Emphasizing the need for solidarity, freedom of expression and an end to military support for Israel, DiEM25 calls for mass voter turnout to support candidates who will address the climate crisis, oppose “oligarchic control” and promote social justice.

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