Turkey’s Approach to Syria’s Kurds Ignores Potential Gains

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Turkey should recognize that the neighbors with which it will likely share its longest borders are not Syria and Iraq, but Kurdish political entities.

Bu Konuda Daha Fazla

  • Al-Jazeera invited almost a dozen Turkish scholars and journalists to its Fourth Annual Forum last month in Doha. It was the first time so many Turkish participants attended. Why did al-Jazeera invite so many Turks to an event focused on the Arab world? More generally, why do people in the Middle East pay attention to Turkish perspectives on their affairs?

  • It may look like a paradox, but the current standoff between Turkey and northern Iraq could turn into an opportunity to solve the Kurdish problem in Turkey and the region. Turkey's increased efforts to fight Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) terrorism has the full backing of all the related actors: the Turkish public, the political establishment, security elites, regional actors and international public opinion. The Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government should seize this opportunity and start a process of national reconciliation and healing.  

  • This policy brief aims to analyse the basic parameters of the new draft constitution in Turkey. Having outlined the radical amendments to the current Constitution in terms of both fundamental rights and state organs, the paper takes up the procedural and substantial criticisms directed against the draft Constitution.

  • The picture was clear and symbolic: on the EU’s 50th birthday German Chancellor Angela Merkel presented as a gift to French President Jacques Chirac a cup with a depiction of Napoleon’s invasion of Alexandria in 1798. Never mind that Turkey, as a candidate country, has not been invited to the party. Never mind either the fact that the current EU president, Merkel, has nothing to hide in her opposition to EU’s membership.

  • Awareness of the importance of civil society institutions increased among Turks in Europe after the mid 1980’s. Membership volume of Turkish civil organizations, their areas of activities and relations with other institutions suggest that Turks internalized values of civil society and are increasingly getting integrated in the Dutch society. Interests of Turks in civil society organizations and civil values as well as focus of their political preferences are an indication of social integration. The primary focus of Turks in the Netherlands is political questions in this country rather than Turkey. They are interested in issues such as political participation and representation in their host country since they want to lead a harmonious life with the society in this country.The current study indicates that Holland is at the heart of the activities of Turkish civil organizations. Majority of the organizations in the sample carry out their activities in Holland either on local or national level. This trend is an indication for the efforts and willingness of Turks who would like to integrate in the larger society. Research results also show that Turks don’t want to live in cultural ghettos isolated from rest of the society with walls of discrimination but they want to lead a social life in harmony with the Dutch society far from conflicts but without losing their own identity.