Is it ripe yet? resolving Turkey’s 30 years of conflict with the PKK
Ünal, M. C.
91 - 125
Item Usage Stats
MetadataShow full item record
Turkey has lately been in the midst of trying to resolve its three-decade old struggle with the Partiya Karkeren Kurdistan (PKK). Elaborating on the history of this conflict, this study analyzes why previous attempts to resolve it failed and why other conflict-resolution opportunities were not taken until 2007. It devotes particular attention to the emergence and failure of the latest resolution process and analyzes prospects and challenges of a potential resolution by analyzing the context, content, and conduct of Turkey's latest peace attempt. This study finds, first, that the PKK has been open to a negotiated settlement since 1993, but the state regime rejected reconciliation and pursued unilateral military solutions until 2007, when Turkey finally recognized the military stalemate and costly deadlock. Second, it argues that what really forced Turkey to search for a resolution are—in addition to the hurting stalemate—recent national and regional power shifts, which have also destabilized the resolution process itself. Third, this study asserts that despite the ripe conditions for resolution, the context and the content of the latest process revealed crucial deficiencies that require a complete restructuring of the central government as well the need to develop greater institutionalization and social engagement for a potential conflict resolution. Finally, this study claims that the nature and characteristics of the current phase of the conflict, as they stand, indicate significant fragilities and spoiling risks due to both internal and external dynamics and actors, as recent developments have indicated in the failure of the latest resolution attempt. © 2015 Taylor & Francis.