Turkish solution process has passed Kobani crisis: HDP

Pro-Kurdish HDP politicians meet Turkish deputy prime minister to push solution process forward, but claim many issues remain unresolved

Pro-Kurdish HDP politicians meet Turkish deputy prime minister to push solution process forward, but claim many issues remain unresolved

ANKARA – The Turkish-Kurdish “solution process” has passed the major crisis sparked by October’s Kobani protests but many issues remain unresolved, according to a pro-Kurdish MP in Turkey.

Peoples’ Democratic Party deputy for Istanbul, Sirri Sureyya Onder, was speaking on Monday after a meeting between HDP members and Deputy Prime Minister Yalcin Akdogan in Ankara.

The Turkish government’s solution process was launched last year and aims to secure an end to the decades-long conflict with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK, which has claimed the lives of more than 40,000 people.

The talks process faced serious jeopardy during deadly October protests over fighting in the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani, close to Turkey's southern border.

Pro-Kurdish protesters took to streets across the country under the pretext that the Turkish government was allegedly doing nothing to halt the advance of Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant extremists pouring into Kobani. Dozens of people were killed in the street protests.

On Monday HDP deputies discussed a new phase in the solution process and ongoing contacts between the government and the Kurdish side.

“We are working to advance experienced post-conflict solution processes around the world. We have experienced fragility over the Kobani protest but would like to say that we have left behind this major crisis, at this point,” Onder stated after the meeting.

Onder emphasized that the solution process would continue, saying: “Now we have started a new phase in the solution process ... but this does not mean that all issues were resolved.”

The HDP deputy said that both sides had reached common ground on some issues, such as not closing dialogue, identifying discussion topics and the methods they will use when advancing the process.

He added that his party will evaluate the latest developments and then will report to Ocalan, who is currently in prison.

Ocalan was arrested by Turkish forces in 1999 and sentenced to death for forming armed gangs under Article 125 of the Turkish Penal Code. The sentence was commuted to life imprisonment as the death penalty was abolished in Turkey in 2004.

An intensive series of negotiations and joint work will start and possible results will be done as soon as possible, the HDP deputy said.

Onder did not offer clarification on the controversial issue of the PKK decommissioning its weapons, saying they will approach this subject after the process matures.

Deputy Prime Minister Akdogan took to Twitter to say: “The process continues with strong political will and determination. The negotiations have accelerated to achieve a permanent solution based on trust and good faith.”

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