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Between Authoritarianism and Peace: The Kurdish Opening in Turkey (2013–2015)

  • Elçin Aktoprak
Chapter
Part of the Comparative Territorial Politics book series (COMPTPOL)

Abstract

Kurdish issue and political Islam have been considered the two major threats against the Turkish Republic since its establishment. While the former has been perceived as a security threat to the territorial integrity and national unity of the Turkish nation-state, the latter has been regarded as a threat to the secular order. Ironically, by the 2000s, these two “others” of the official discourse had begun to confront each other under the circumstances of Turkey’s transformation. In my chapter, I will describe the Kurdish policy of the AKP and will analyse the search for peace under the rising authoritarianism of the AKP governments.I will briefly examine first phase of the Kurdish Opening (2009–2010) which lasted few months but mainly will focus on the second phase (2013–2015) which took place under the rising authoritarian tendencies of the AKP government since 2011. I will examine if it is possible to search for peace under authoritarianism in two main parts. Firstly, the international, regional and national dynamics that led to re-launch the Opening will be handled. Secondly, the negotiation process will be analysed in the framework of Galtung’s approach and the reasons for the failure in 2015 will be discussed. In-depth interviews with representatives of the parties at the negotiation table will deepen my study and contribute to my founding research question about rising authoritarianism and searching peace at the same time. The answer is and will be crucial for the recent and prospective autonomy debates in Turkey and lay the background for the following chapters on Kurdish autonomy discussions.

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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Elçin Aktoprak
    • 1
  1. 1.Independent ResearcherAnkaraTurkey

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