Nurettin Demirtaş

Nurettin Demirtaş
President of the DTP
In office
December 2007 – May 2008
Preceded byAhmet Türk, Aysel Tuğluk
Succeeded byAhmet Türk, Emine Ayna
Personal details
Born1972 (age 50–51)
Elazığ, Turkey
Political partyDemocratic Society Party
Military career
Service/branchGendarmerie General Command
Years of service2008-2009

Nurettin Demirtaş (born 1972) was a former Kurdish politician of the Democratic Society Party (DTP) in Turkey and a member of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).[1][2]

Early life and education

He grew up and attended secondary school in Diyarbakır. He then studied business at university in Muğla, where he was arrested in 1993 for his political activities. He spent the following 12 years in prison. After his release he became the founding president of an association for the development of civil society.[3] On 28 May 2006 he was arrested after having attended a funeral of members of the PKK and spent 4 months in prison.[4]

Political career

He was elected the vice-president in February 2007 and president of the DTP on 9 December 2007, at the party's second general assembly.[5] As a politician he was a peace activist and in September 2007, he and Selma Irmak were prosecuted for having mistreated the Turkish nation for having distributed leaflets criticizing the Turkish military on International World Peace Day. The investigation over a violating the Article 301 of the Turkish penal code was dismissed only in May 2008.[6]

On 17 December 2007 he was arrested on his return from a European tour and imprisoned on charges of forging a document to evade military conscription.[7] He was released 28 April 2008 by a military court and enlisted in the army the following day.[8] Turkish men are required to serve in the army for up to 15 months after the age of 20 unless they have health problems that prevent them from fulfilling military duty. In May 2008 he resigned from the presidency of the DTP.[9] On 9 November 2009 he was sentenced to 6 years and 3 months for having attended a funeral of PKK militants, a sentence he appealed.[4]

Later Demirtaş left Turkey and joined the PKK.[2][10] Anadolu agency reported its armed forces had wounded Nurettin in 2015.[10][11]

Selahattin Demirtaş is his brother and former chairman of HDP.[10]


  1. ^ "Demirtaş'ın abisinden CHP'ye: Kürt oyları çantada keklik değil!". Rûdaw (in Turkish). 11 May 2019. Retrieved 22 March 2020.
  2. ^ a b Farooq, Umar. "Turkey's Crackdown on Kurdish Mayors Could Backfire". Foreign Policy. Retrieved 17 November 2019.
  3. ^ Fourth International Conference on the EU, Turkey and the Kurds
  4. ^ a b Önderoğlu, Erol. "DTP Member Demirtaş Appeals against Prison Sentence". Bianet.
  5. ^ Kurd Net, 9 November 2007, retrieved 13 August 2009
  6. ^ Country Reports on Human Rights Practices for 2008 Vol.1. Government Printing Office. pp. 1739–1740. ISBN 978-0-16-087515-1.
  7. ^ Zengin, Nilüfer. "DTP Chair Demirtaş Arrested by Military Court".
  8. ^ Turkish Politics in Action, 30 April 2008, retrieved 13 August 2009
  9. ^ "Ahmet Türk Resigns From DTP Group Presidency". Bianet. 28 May 2008. Retrieved 17 November 2019.
  10. ^ a b c "Barzani asks PKK to quit Iraqi Kurdish enclave". France 24. 1 August 2015. Retrieved 1 November 2022.
  11. ^ "Turkey: Military operations 'kill 260 PKK terrorists'". Retrieved 1 November 2022.
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