Turkey's Ministry of Interior has announced that the metropolitan mayors of Diyarbakır, Mardin, and Van have been removed from office. Erdoğan's ruling AKP government also appointed trustees instead of the mayors elected in the latest local elections. The metropolitan mayors of the three provinces were elected from the pro-Kurdish HDP.
The government dismissed the elected mayors on the ground that there are ongoing investigations against them at heavy penal courts.
Diyarbakır Governor Hasan Basri Güzeloğlu, Mardin Governor Mustafa Yaman and Van Governor Mehmet Emin Bilmez have been appointed as trustees after the removal of Diyarbakır Metropolitan Mayor Selçuk Mızraklı, Mardin Metropolitan Mayor Ahmet Türk and Van Metropolitan Mayor Bedia Özgökçe Ertan.
The municipal buildings have been busted and blockaded by the police forces, according to the sources.
After the failed coup attempt on July 15, 2016, the ruling AKP appointed trustees to these provinces and the municipalities were administered by the trustees until the latest local elections of March 31. The pro-Kurdish HDP candidates were elected again by receiving over half of the votes.
The Ministry of Interior has also announced after the dismissals that 418 people have been taken into custody in operations conducted in 29 provinces, including Diyarbakır, Mardin and Van.