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Kurdish Activist Zana, Six Jailed Kurds To Run In Turkey's Elections

A Kurdish political party in Turkey says it will back former legislator Leyla Zana -- who spent a decade in prison on charges of having links to Kurdish rebels -- in Turkey's June 12 elections.

Turkey's so-called Peace and Democracy Party announced today that it also is supporting six Kurdish politicians who are in jail, charged with links to the rebels of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK.

The politicians all plan to run as independents to overcome a 10 percent electoral threshold that keeps smaller parties out of parliament.

The party says jailed candidates would be released if elected, under Turkish laws.

Kurdish politicians are trying to prevent Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's party from making inroads in traditional Kurdish strongholds in southeast Turkey.

compiled from agency reports