Co-Chairman of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Selahattin Demirtaş takes up Turkey’s decades long Kurdish Problem and the implications of its resolution for Turkey’s democracy and the Middle East in his article for TPQ’s Winter 2015 issue.
In the article, Demirtaş voices distrust in the government’s intention to move the Peace Process forward, claiming that no concrete gains with respect to freedom or rights have been made in the past two years. According to Demirtaş, the negotiation process lacks transparency and without it, it is susceptible to conspiracy theories and efforts to stall the process. Demirtaş is particularly critical of the Internal Security Package prepared by the AKP government, which would “create a de facto police state and reverse the process of democratization.”
Through this article, we at TPQ hope to shine a light on this issue’s changing parameters.
THE MIDDLE EAST, THE KURDISH PEACE PROCESS IN TURKEY, AND RADICAL DEMOCRACY
ne of the main principles we have been advocating for the 24 years since our political representation in Parliament began with the Democracy Party (DEP), is to ground our policies in the understanding that the resolution of the Kurdish Problem cannot be considered separately from the democratization of Turkey. We would like to emphasize once again that we see the process of Turkey’s democratization as part of the resolution of the Kurdish Problem, and vice versa: the resolution of the Kurdish Problem as part of Turkey’s democratization.
This does not imply that the Kurdish Problem is the only problem of democratization in Turkey. It is therefore necessary for us to create a multidimensional front of struggle and to organize ourselves accordingly. Without the resolution of the Kurdish Problem, it becomes harder to create movements for advancement in other fields necessary for the democratization of Turkey such as labor, identity, culture, and the environment. Considering the tension that the Turkish political atmosphere brings about, we can say that the Kurdish Problem is still one of the foremost determinants of Turkish politics…