Video: Brawl Breaks Out in Turkish Parliament During Meeting on Constitutional Changes
Members of parliament in Turkey got into a bizarre brawl on May 2 during a committee meeting.
Turkey’s governing AK party and pro-Kurdish politicians got physically violent during the meeting in which members were discussing changes to the constitution.
In a video posted on YouTube, at minute 1:30, legislators begin punching and kicking each other.
A man is seen jumping over a table and almost stepping on a woman as he tries to fight someone on the opposite side of the room. Other legislators throw water bottles and paper, while another man is seen standing on a desk kicking people below.
Another video posted on Facebook shows the fight from another perspective of the room.
The brawl left one person with a dislocated shoulder and a second with a bloodied nose.
This isn’t the first violent act to break out. Last week, the first day of the amendment discussions also ended up in a fight, leaving five lawmakers injured.
— Lloyd Ziel (@LloydZiel) April 28, 2016
Meanwhile, on the same day of the fight the Turkish parliamentary committee approved a contentious ruling-party proposal to strip legislators of their immunity from prosecution.
The proposed change, which could pave the way for the trial of several pro-Kurdish legislators on terror-related charges and their possible dismissal from parliament, was cleared by the committee later that day.
The constitutional change still needs to be approved by the full assembly. It was proposed by the ruling party after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused the pro-Kurdish party, People’s Democratic Party, HDP, of being linked to the outlawed Kurdish rebels and repeatedly called for their prosecution. The HDP, which backs Kurdish and other minority rights, denies the allegations.
The day after the fight, both the ruling party and the HDP blamed each other for the brawl.
Ruling party lawmaker Bulent Turan said the debate on the amendment will possibly happen on May 16, with a vote 2 days after.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.