Bugün’s Gülay Göktürk notes that it would be much more effective to come up with solid solutions or roadmaps for the problem rather than just mourning over the dead and making calls to end the violence. She then mentions a recent article in which politician İlhami Işık proposes a scenario in which the Kurdish issue might be solved with seven steps by the end of 2013. Işık lists five steps that should be taken by Parliament and the government and two that should be taken by terrorists. Those five steps for Parliament and the government are: announcing that the new constitution being drafted will have no reference to ethnicity in its definition of citizenship; introducing a partial amnesty for the jailed terrorists who have not been involved in violent acts; withdrawing all government reservations to the European Charter of Local Self-Government; announcing that students will start receiving education in their mother tongue in the coming years; and transferring jailed PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan to house arrest. In return, the PKK should end its armed struggle and move all its forces outside Turkey -- but this is where a serious problem emerges, Göktürk says. It is not impossible for the government and Parliament to take the aforementioned steps, but as for the PKK, she does not believe it will take any step towards such reforms. The PKK thinks the only solution is to hand local administration in the Southeast over to the PKK. Apart from this, no major reform will end its violence. So should Parliament and the government not take the steps proposed? They certainly should, the columnist underlines. They should accomplish all of the five reforms not for convincing the PKK to join in a solution, but because they owe this to Kurdish citizens.
Taraf’s Kurtuluş Tayiz argues, saying the government is more determined than ever to take action in the face of an increasing death toll and that it is currently seeking a solution, which will probably mean organizing a meeting between terrorists and government representatives. However, Tayiz doesn’t think including the PKK in the solution process will yield results.
Another Bugün columnist, Adem Yavuz Arslan, further questions whether government representatives meeting with terrorists would be part of a solution or not. He thinks we see examples in the world that these kinds of meetings can actually work. But the timing of these meetings is of the utmost importance. Holding a meeting today, when the PKK has increased its level of terrorism, will play into the hands of terrorists, and they will believe the more they shed blood, the more they can make the government accept their terms. As a matter of fact, this belief is the exact reason behind the currently escalating violence. As for the Oslo meetings held between government representatives and terrorist leaders in 2010, Arslan asserts that the PKK used those meetings to stall the state while the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK), an umbrella organization encompassing the PKK, was taking hold in cities, and thus the meetings actually played into the terrorists’ hands. Terrorist organizations must be approached for negotiation only when they have been debilitated; otherwise, they will be the ones to make the other party accept their terms. Therefore, Arslan argues, having a meeting with the PKK some day to pave the way for solving the terrorism problem -- though certainly not the Kurdish issue -- is inevitable, but it will occur only after the terrorists have realized that they are going to lose.