MP Sebahat Tuncel was one of the speakers in a meeting which was held in in the British Parliament, House of Commons, in London on Monday the 17th December 2007. The meeting was hosted by MP Simon Hughes.
Sebahat Tuncel told that DTP is calling Turkey to stop its attacks against Kurds in North Iraq.
”Kurds are not demanding anything special, only the right to use their own language. They want to have education and mass media in Kurdish”, she told. DTP wants also more power to the local authorities.
Sebahat Tuncel was elected last summer to Turkish Parliament by 300 000 votes from Istanbul. This is the biggest amount of votes any candidate has got in parliamentary elections during the history of the republic of Turkey. Ms. Tuncel believes also Turks have voted her.
MP Simon Hughes expressed many times during his speech that now it is time to look for practical steps to achieve peace.
”There must be cultural and linguistic diversity, it is the word of the day”, said Mr. Hughes who visited Turkey October 2007.
Lawyer Mark Muller said that Turkey’s biggest problem is that it has not been able to move towards democracy. Kurdish issue is only one reflection of this.
”There has been a belief for example in the EU that economical reforms in the Southeast and some changes in the constitution would solve the problems. But now we know that this is not the case”, he said.
Professor Michael M. Günter was thinking the same way when he explained that solving Kurdish question would open road to full democratization in Turkey.
His experience from Diyarbakir was that despite PKK is labelled as a terrorist organization it is difficult to find Kurds who want to criticize it.
Journalist Jonathan Fryer pointed out that Turkey is denying its multicultural roots.
There were many interesting points in public discussion. Some one said AKP got so many votes during last elections because it opposed military and the war in North Iraq. But if there would be elections now, it would not got so many votes in the Southeast.
Some one else complained that Turkish generals visit US and EU as if they were politicians. This must change, military must stay away from politics!
Pictures: on the top: Big Ben in Westminster, London, in the Christmas lights. The meeting was hold in Committee Room 6 in the House of Commons. In the middle the chairman of the meeting, MP Simon Hughes. MP Sebahat Tuncel sits next to him. Pictures: Kristiina Koivunen
This was a good meeting, especially because of the practical attitude of Simon Hughes. Now is is time to think how the war could be avoided, we have heard hundreads of times what the problems are.
It would benefit also the Turks if there would be more autonomy for the local authorities. It is needed as well in Western Turkey as in Southeast Turkey.
Final resolutions of EUTCC conference which was held in Brussels at the beginning of December 2007 describe the main issues of peace and political solution for the Kurdish question in Turkey.