Turkey’s new democratisation reform package may mark a step forward for civil rights, but it does not go far enough to ease social tension and feelings of mistrust that are afflicting the country, analysts say.
"I witnessed a Turkish tank made in Germany destroying a Kurdish village. Civilians, children included, were wounded, and many were taking shelter inside a besieged church,” said Media, the German nurse who has become legendary in the Kurdish mountains of northern Iraq and is known here only by this name.
The Mar. 21 ceasefire in the battle between the Kurdistan Workers’ Party and the Turkish state offers Turkey not only the hope of peace after decades of bloodshed, but poses profound implications for the region at large.
It was only seven in the morning when Mohamed Abdi spread out a rug a few metres away from an artillery crater, up in the Qandil mountains of northern Iraq. This Iraqi Kurd from Suleimaniyah, 260 kilometres northeast of Baghdad, was ready to celebrate the Newroz – the Kurdish and Persian New Year – along with his family.