Democratic People's Party (Turkey)

The Democratic People's Party (Turkish: Demokratik Halk Partisi, DEHAP) was a pro-Kurdish[1] political party in Turkey.

Democratic People's Party
Kurdish: Partiya Gel a Demokratîk
Turkish: Demokratik Halk Partisi
ChairpersonVeysi Aydin (1998)
Mehmet Abbasoğlu (1998–2003)
Tuncer Bakırhan (2003–2005)
FoundedOctober 24, 1997 (1997-10-24)
DissolvedAugust 17, 2005 (2005-08-17)
Preceded byPeople's Democracy Party
Merged intoDemocratic Society Party
Succeeded byParticipatory Democracy Party
Rights and Freedoms Party
IdeologyKurdish nationalism
Democratic socialism
Left-wing nationalism
Political positionLeft-wing
ColorsRed, Orange or Yellow

Founding and political contextEdit

DEHAP was founded 24 October 1997.[2]

It was the continuation of the People's Democracy Party (HADEP), which was banned in March 2003 by the Constitutional Court on the grounds that it supported the Kurdistan Workers Party PKK).[3] On the 26th of March, 2003, 35 Mayors who were part of the HADEP joined the DEHAP.[4] The party had three chairmen. The party was at first presided by Veysi Aydin, who was elected on the parties first ordinary congress in January 1998. After his membership was revoked by the Turkish Supreme Court, he was replaced by Mehmet Abbasoğlu at the first extraordinary congress of the party in May 1998.[2] In the second extraordinary party congress in June 2003, Tuncer Bakırhan was elected its president.[2]

Electoral resultsEdit

At its last legislative elections in November 2002, the party won 6.2% of the popular vote, thus not reaching the 10% threshold for gaining representation in the Grand National Assembly of Turkey. For the local elections in March 2004,[5] the DEHAP, together with the Labour Party (EMEP), the Freedom and Solidarity Party (ÖDP), and the Socialist Democracy Party (SDP), entered an electoral alliance under the name of the Social Democrat People's Party (SHP)[4] Following the elections, 56 elected mayors returned to the DEHAP.[4] It signed a declaration which demanded the PKK to lay down its arms together with 150 Turkish intellectuals.[6]

Merger and dissolutionEdit

On the 17th of August, 2005, DEHAP announced its merger with the Democratic Society Movement (DTH) founded by Leyla Zana to form the Democratic Society Party (DTP).[7] In November 2005, it announced that it has dissolved itself.


  1. ^ Emrullah Uslu, The Transformation of Kurdish Political Identity in Turkey: Impact of Modernization, Democratization and Globalization, ProQuest, 2009, ISBN 978-1-109-05548-1, p. 73.
  2. ^ a b c "1990'dan Bugüne, HEP'ten DTP'ye Kürtlerin Zorlu Siyaset Mücadelesi". Bianet - Bagimsiz Iletisim Agi. Retrieved 2020-10-11.
  3. ^ Moghadam 2007, 86.
  4. ^ a b c Refugees, United Nations High Commissioner for. "Refworld | Turkey: The situation and treatment of members, supporters and sympathizers of leftist parties, particularly the People's Democratic Party (HADEP) and Democratic People's Party (DEHAP) (January 2003 – September 2004)". Refworld. Retrieved 2020-04-10.
  5. ^ Carkoglu, Ali (2011-09-30). "TURKISH LOCAL ELECTIONS OF MARCH 28, 2004: A PROSPECTIVE EVALUATION" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-09-30. Retrieved 2020-04-10.
  6. ^ Fend, Walter-Josef (2015). Kurds, History - Religion - Language - Politics (PDF). Wolfgang Taucher, Mathias Vogl, Peter Webinger Austrian Federal Ministry of the Interior. pp. 59–60. ISBN 978-3-9503643-6-1.
  7. ^ Marcus 2007, xi