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Network for Social Democracy in Asia (SocDem Asia) Statement of Solidarity with the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) in Turkey

The Network for Social Democracy in Asia (SocDem Asia) condemns the recent wave of arrests conducted by the Turkish government against members and leaders of the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP). Last 25 September, the government’s chief prosecutor issued arrest warrants for eighty-two (82) individuals affiliated with the HDP. This is part of the ongoing campaign by the government of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to stifle opposition in the country especially directed at his most persistent opponent, the HDP. As of now, numerous leaders and activists of the HDP have been arrested and jailed including former co-chairs Selahattin Demirtaş and Figen Yüksekdağ who are still under detention.

It is also worrying that such arrests are conducted under the existing conditions of a global pandemic and health crisis. While Turkey has been able to decrease the rate of infections from a previous high of about 4,000 infections per day to around 1,000 per day the pandemic continues to ravage the country. Instead of focusing the government’s resources in addressing the health and economic issues that have been created by this pandemic, President Erdogan has chosen to focus his attention on settling political scores and securing the ruling party’s domination of Turkey’s political life.

We urge the immediate cessation of this campaign of political attacks against the political opposition and civil society and we call for the immediate release of all political prisoners. We stand in solidarity with the HDP and the democratic opposition in their fight against the Erdogan government’s unceasing attacks against the people’s democratic freedoms and their legitimate organizations.

Campaign Strategy Training For Young Politicians

The Network for Social Democracy in Asia (Socdem Asia), in partnership with the Mongolian People’s Party (MPP), Strategy Academy and the Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (FES) Mongolia Office recently conducted an onlline training for young candidates from the MPP who will contest the upcoming October local elections.

Seeking to contribute to the political strategy development of its member parties under the framework of “Transformative Changemaking” (TCM). Responding to a request from the MPP, Socdem Asia developed this tailor-fitted series of Campaign Strategy Training for Young Politicians. Participants were given basic training on mappig the prevailing youth discourse under the framework of Transformative Changemaking (TCM), Basics in political communications and elements of a campaign narrative, and on the campaign phases and infrastructure as well as on volunteer management.

Socdem Asia recognizes that it is essential for progressives to reinvent themselves with new ways of building up a societal base that tips the balance of power toward transformation. This demands new methods for building up social support, reaching out to the untapped constituencies, consolidating around a narrative and a concrete action-oriented project that exemplifies the kind of politics progressives espouse and practice.

Online Activities for Party Educators Training

The Network for Social Democracy in Asia (SocDem Asia) partnership with the Olof Palme International Center, this online training was conducted to help political party educators from the member parties of SocDem Asia on how to integrate the use of online tools which have now gained widespread use because of the COVID-19 pandemic and the measures undertaken to address it. The training looked into digital and online tools such as Slack, Zoom, and others which can be utilized to create a good learning experience for trainees.

The training focused on increasing the capacitites of parties in conducting qualitative online trainings and academies such as on knowledge of how to plan and design for effective learning online, understanding of several online learning tools and their most common features, understanding roles and responsibilities that are required to lead and conduct online learning, and designing and facilitating inclusion, participation and the use of a group’s collective intelligence and experiences.

Participants were from Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, Malaysia, India, Nepal, Mongolia, and Timor-Leste.