Turkey Sentences Former Kurdish Politician

Posted May 24th, 2012 at 11:05 am (UTC-5)
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A Turkish court has sentenced a prominent Kurdish lawmaker to 10 years in prison on charges of spreading rebel propaganda.

The court in the mainly Kurdish province of Diyarbakir Thursday convicted Leyla Zana for a series of speeches in support of the Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK.

She was originally convicted of the charges in 2008, but an appeals court overturned that decision and ordered a retrial.

Her lawyer is expected to appeal the verdict.

Zana, a Nobel Peace Prize nominee and recipient of the European Parliament's Sakharov human rights award, was a member of Turkey's parliament in the early 1990s.

She has already spent a decade in prison after being convicted in 1994 of ties to the PKK.

Turkey, the United States and the European Union consider the PKK a terrorist group.

PKK rebels have been fighting for autonomy in southeastern Turkey since 1984. The 28-year conflict has claimed more than 40,000 lives.