Turkey, Syria and Saving the PKK Peace Process

The Turkey-PKK peace process is still a rare spot of hope in the Middle East and the dangers of a Syrian spillover have underlined how many shared interests Turkey and Turkey's Kurds have in overcoming inertia in the talks. This article argues that there are three separate tracks to a settlement, which influence each other but should be kept well apart. The first track is the actual negotiations with the PKK; the second track should consist of the long-discussed reforms to give equal rights to all citizens and remove the root causes of the Kurdish problem; and the third track is the overall regional context and process. Peace will release a long-standing brake on Turkey's economy as well as on its democratisation efforts. The government should recognise that the end goal is not just disarmament in Turkey, but to get to a point where Turkey's Kurds no longer feel any need for the PKK.

Paper produced within the framework of the project Turkey, Europe and the World.

Roma, Istituto affari internazionali, December 2014, 4 p.
Commentary 21
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