Peace broker undermines progress in Kurdish process

Recently, Deputy Prime Minister and government spokesman Bulent ArIn responded to a statement made by President Recep Tayyip ErdoIan on the settlement process, noting that “it is the government that is responsible for the process” this response confirmed a rift between the presidential palace and the government on this matter It is clear that the reason for the emergence of the crisis is the president’s tendency to act like a president i

Recently, Deputy Prime Minister and government spokesman Banduumllent ArInandccedil responded to a statement made by President Recep Tayyip ErdoIan on the settlement process, noting that andquotit is the government that is responsible for the processandquot this response confirmed a rift between the presidential palace and the government on this matter

It is clear that the reason for the emergence of the crisis is the presidentand#39s tendency to act like a president in a presidential system ErdoIan talks every day on every issue. He engages in polemics with opposition leaders and figures.

He does not care if his statements put the government and the prime minister in a delicate position. He does not care about remaining impartial and neutral.

And he does feel the need for cohesion, a constructive approach and reconciliation. He wants allegiance, not harmony.

It is obvious that his approach is based on his understanding of how to rule the country. He does not feel safe or comfortable even if he is able to cover up the bribery and corruption investigation.

He feels lonely. For this reason, he wants to become andldquothe one manandrdquo of the country.

He thus views everybody who does not submit to his wishes and refers to laws as a threat and danger He does not hesitate to stand against even his closest and oldest friends like ArInandccedil.

ErdoIan presented the last crisis as evidence suggesting that a presidential system is a must in the country.

This is a typical opportunistic approach.

If ErdoIan were to become andquotpresidentandquot under a presidential system, and government members serve as his aisors or secretaries, there would be no crisis like this.

In that case, he would make all the decisions and nobody would challenge him arguing that the government is authorized to proceed. This is the message he gives to the people.

And his ambition to become one man is discernable in this perception he would like to create.

ErdoIan and the Justice and Development Party (AKP) has won elections by exploiting the peopleand#39s desire for a solution over the past two years in the Kurdish issue.

He does not pay strong attention to the settlement process and he does not use the opportunity to make a lasting peace instead, he exploits and manipulates this process because he sees the peopleand#39s desire for peace as a useful political tool and argument.

But he is no longer able to exploit the settlement process.

He now has to respond to the question that he has been avoiding: What does the government understand by the settlement process?

There are some steps that need to be taken for lasting peace and settlement. The process has to be conducted under the supervision of a third party.

A truth and reconciliation commission needs to be set up. This commission would need to focus on the reasons for the emergence of the Kurdish issue, to overcome the denialist approach and convince all popular groups that a peaceful solution is possible within the democratic order The pain associated with the Kurdish issue should be healed and justice should be delivered.

This is a process during which everybody has to confront their own issues, demands, peace offers and solution projects in other words, they should be involved in the process.

The process involves the end of violence by the Kurdistan Workersand#39 Party (PKK), the withdrawal of PKK militants from Turkish territories and finally the disarming of the group however, the process is not all about these.

At this stage, ErdoIan has to raise a different voice. He argues that there is no need for the supervision of a third party or a truth and reconciliation commission and that there is no Kurdish issue at all.

He further said the PKK should lay down its arms. His vision is restricted to these arguments.

And I have been arguing since the beginning that this is a plan for a solution.

The fact that ErdoIan objects to setting up a supervisory committee that would comprise mostly pro-government figures confirmed this.

The crisis now requires a reshuffling and realignment in the process. And those who want peace, democracy and solution will not align themselves with ErdoIan.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman