Duvar English 

While criticizing Turkey’s policies regarding northern Syria, veteran politician Ahmet Türk from the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP) emphasized that Turks and Kurds share an age-old relationship and that Turkey cannot benefit from making an enemy out of the Kurds, in a statement to the Mesopotamian News Agency. 

“If Turkey had established a friendly, brotherly relationship with the Kurds, it would be in Turkey’s favor,” said the 77-year-old Türk, who in August was removed from his position as the HDP’s mayor of the southeastern province of Mardin, just months after being elected to the post in the March local elections of this year. 

It was not the first time Türk was removed from office. Elected to the same position in 2014, Türk was subsequently dismissed in 2016, amid a wave targeting the HDP that saw dozens of its politicians booted from office on terror charges. Active in politics since 1973, Türk has repeatedly been targeted by a series of governments in Turkey for his pro-Kurdish positions. 

“This structuring in the Middle East has never, ever accepted the Kurds’ gains and has always targeted them. When losing power, in particular right-wing, nationalist and racist governments approach this issue by creating an enemy for the purpose of holding on to power,” Türk said. 

“War has never solved problems. After being at great odds, after a certain period time people solve their problems by coming together and establishing dialogue,” Türk said, emphasizing that in spite of Turkey’s complicated Kurdish issue and all that has transpired as part of it, it is not too late for dialogue and reconciliation. 

“In a country where a quarter of the population is composed of Kurds, what is the logic in making an enemy out of Kurds? How does it benefit this country,” Türk said.