French police detain two Kurds over activist killings
PARIS (AFP) – French police have detained two men in connection with the killings of three female Kurdish activists in Paris last week, judicial and police sources told AFP on Friday.
The two men are both ethnic Kurds, born in Turkey in 1974 and 1982, and one of them is thought to have been a driver for one of the victims, a police source said, describing the arrests as the product of “significant leads”.
The two men were arrested during the day on Thursday, a judicial source said, the same day thousands of Kurds gathered in Turkey’s southeastern city of Diyarbakir for the funerals of the three activists.
The judicial source provided no other details on the reasons the two men were detained or what role, if any, they are suspected of having played in the killings. The three women, one of them 55-year-old Sakine Cansiz, a co-founder of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), were found shot execution-style at a Kurdish centre in Paris on January 10.
The Paris killings came amid nascent peace talks between Turkish secret services and jailed PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan with the aim of disarming the group, branded as a terrorist organisation by Turkey and much of the international community.