Police on Friday tried to forcibly remove demonstrators who camped outside the Supreme Court in Nicosia protesting over the planned extradition of Kurdish independence activist Kenan Ayaz to Germany.
The demonstrators camped in solidarity with Ayaz who is currently held at the Nicosia Central Prison over his alleged links with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) which has been controversially designated as a terrorist organisation.
On Friday, members of the police attempted to force the demonstrators to leave the Court’s premises and also fended off a journalist filming the incident, philenews reports.
Ayaz, 49, who was been living in Cyprus for more than 10 years as a political refugee, went on a hunger strike on Thursday, May 4, protesting a Larnaca District Court decision to extradite him to Germany. He fears that if sentenced, another extradition to Turkey will follow where he might be subject to torture or even murder.
In a protest march on Thursday, seven persons announced they were starting a hunger strike in solidarity with Ayaz and camped outside the Supreme Court.
On May 9, the Court will hear Ayaz’s appeal against the extradition decision and is expected to issue its final ruling on the case on May 16.
Turkey has asked Nato countries to extradite persons it classifies as terrorists (often Kurdish opponents) in exchange for greenlighting the ascendance of Finland and Sweden into the military alliance.
Since 2017, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has given Germany a list of almost 4,000 names his administration considers Kurdish terrorists.
Detained Kurdish activist Kenan Ayaz goes on protest hunger strike