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October 22, 2012, Monday

Locals’ response to acts of terror

As the fighting between the military and the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) intensified over the summer, politicians and columnists pondered ways to end the terror problem as well as the Kurdish issue.

Some columnists asserted that the military has been fighting against the terrorists for so many years that we have come to realize that it won’t solve the problem. What would be more effective, they claim, is the opposition and resistance by Kurdish locals against the PKK.

Recalling that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan called on Kurdish citizens in his most recent party congress to take more effective steps and to raise their voices against the terrorists, Star’s Sedat Laçiner said that Erdoğan’s call is of the utmost importance with regards to solving the issue. After all, terror acts in the last 30 years inflicted the most damage on Kurdish locals. Their stores were burnt down while others were forced to close down their shops, fewer Kurds received an education and killings and bombings became routine. And currently terrorists are setting fire to schools and forcing the locals not to send their children to school, which is almost the only source of hope for Kurdish children’s future. But, he said, we should admit that Kurds have long failed to display an effective reaction against such brutalities and asked why this was so. Although Laçiner felt sure that more than 90 percent of the locals are fed up with the PKK and its actions, he thinks they don’t have the right atmosphere to freely speak their minds because Kurds, who were oppressed and silenced by the state in the past, are now being oppressed and silenced by the PKK. They know that once they express views that differ from those of the organization, they will first be threatened and then physically assaulted. And you cannot expect any less from a terrorist organization that sets fire to schools, can you, Laçiner asked.

Meanwhile a new debate around the claim that “a new outraged Kurdish generation is emerging and if the state does not solve the Kurdish question fast enough, solving it will be much more difficult with that new generation,” has surfaced. Joining in the debate, Yeni Şafak’s Yasin Aktay said this claim was not an observation but more the current political stance of the Kurds. He explained that Kurdish politicians who are experiencing difficulties in bringing Kurdish youth under control are using this claim as an excuse to escape from shouldering responsibility for these youths.

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