Turkish legislators take up bill to prosecute colleagues

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A committee of Turkey's Parliament has kicked off debate on a contentious ruling-party proposal to strip legislators of their immunity from prosecution — a move that could pave the way for the trial of pro-Kurdish legislators on terror charges.

The committee met Thursday for initial discussions on the proposed constitutional amendment, which the ruling party prepared after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused the pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party of being an arm of the outlawed Kurdish rebels and pushed for the prosecution of party leaders.

The move comes amid a surge of violence in Turkey's southeast after a fragile peace process with the rebels collapsed.

On Wednesday, a brawl erupted inside Parliament after a ruling-party legislator walked toward a pro-Kurdish party deputy, calling him "terrorist, terrorist!"