NORTH KURDISTAN (TURKEY) –  PKK Considering Shifting Strategy / The party is hoping on the Western powers to mediate for a new phase of talks with Turkey

28 June 2016 –   Hemin Salih – BasNews – ERBIL — Kurdistan Worker’s Party (PKK) is reportedly considering a major shift in its strategies towards Turkey, hoping that the US and Masoud Barzani, the Kurdish prominent leader, to mediate between Qandil and Ankara.A source close to the PKK revealed to BasNews that in the face of the recent developments in both the Turkish and Syrian parts of Kurdistan, PKK is now discussing the reconsideration of its previous strategies and mapping up a new one for the new phase.

PKK’s leadership is in talk to hold a general congress in which the party will revise the old strategies, said the source, who wished to remain anonymous. Part of PKK’s leadership believes that compromising in their decades-long-conflict in Turkish Kurdistan may be a turning point only if it serves the interests of the Syrian Kurdistan, better known as Rojava.

PKK, after almost two years of ceasefire with Turkey, once again resumed their military conflicts in July 2015. The new deadly confrontations have so far caused the death of scores of civilians and the displacement of thousands of locals from their homes across the Kurdish areas. However, the source says, PKK has realized that the new phase of confrontations will not lead them to their goal.

The resumption of PKK-Turkey peace talks will be included in the party’s new strategy, the source continued, noting that PKK will be insistent on the new talks to be overseen by the US, UN or the European Union. He also revealed that PKK will been looking into securing the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP) position in Turkey’s politics through a new approach with Ankara.

As it is not yet clear how the new Turkish Prime Minster, Binali Yildirim, will deal with the Kurdish question in the country, PKK is considering to compromise in its strategies if Ankara does the same. According to the source, despite its disputes with Kurdistan Region President, PKK is hoping on Masoud Barzani to play a role in the future PKK-Turkey talks.

Mohammed Amin Penjweni, a Kurdish political commentator close to PKK, told BasNews that a new phase of peace talks between Turkey and PKK may only start with the intermediation of US, UK, UN or EU. “There have been serious attempt to help the Peace Process succeed in Turkey, but due to Erdogan’s and Turkish Government [policies], the attempts have failed,” Penjweni said.

The Kurdish political commentator believes that the peace talks are far better than war as none of the sides may benefit from the conflicts. He also welcomed any helping hand to resume the negotiations between Qandil and Ankara. Zryan Rojhalati, a political commentator focusing on Turkish affairs, believes that PKK shouldn’t have concentrated on the opposing Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and taken the issue as personal, but rather focused on preserving the rights of the Kurdish population in the country. “History has proven that peace [talks] can result in greater achievements,” he noted.  Barzani is expected to play a significant role in the resumption of the peace process as Turkey and Kurdistan Region are in need of each other equally, Rojhalati added.