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Peace Making or State Breaking? The Turkish-Kurdish Peace Processes and the Role of Diasporas

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English

ID: <10670/1.mbhfvz>
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Abstract

When Erdogan and his party, the AKP, were elected for the first time in 2002, they made several important pledges. None of these have been fulfilled. On the contrary, in recent years the conflict between Turks and Kurds has increased and societal divisions are at boiling point. Unless relations between Turks and Kurds improve, this article contends that it is not possible to resolve the other pressing issues. Under an Erdogan-led regime Turkey has become a rogue state which is now heading towards civil war. This article begins by arguing that there has never been a real Turkish-Kurdish peace process. The outcomes of the research reported here show that the aim of past negotiations – for both the Erdogan-led AKP government and the PKK – is actually to monopolise power and violence, rather than to move towards sustainable peace. The second argument is that diaspora, especially for stateless people, is not just a ‘home away from home’. The underlying concern tackled here is how successful negotiations for peace and post-conflict societies can be reached with the help of different stakeholders, including diasporas. The article includes a case history of Kurdish alternative legal practice, which shows that diaspora communities are not only idealistic protesters, but can also act as positive agents and create practical solutions for stateless communities. Finally, the article suggests 15 practical steps towards a sustainable peace.

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