MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Sunday, Turkish Transport Minister Binali Yildirim was elected as the new chair of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and tasked to form the government as a new prime minister. Yildirim is a strong supporter of president Recep Tayyip Erdogan and has already promised to continue fight against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).
"Despite the pessimistic prospects for the Kurdish issue in Turkey, President of Iraqi Kurdistan Region Masoud Barzani, Turkish Kurds and the Turkish government are now holding negotiations on various directions. Barzani is working on it very actively, and Turkish Kurds place their best hopes on him," Hoshawi told Sputnik.
"Europe is also exercising some pressure on Turkey, and Ankara is not in the best position internationally at the moment, therefore it has to take into account considerations of the European partners. So, there is a hope that despite all the hawkish statements, parties [in Turkey] will have to find a compromise," he said.
Kurdish controversy with the government in Turkey worsened last week, when the parliament passed legislation that would allow the removal of immunity from parliament members during investigations into Kurdish activity.
New Turkish Gov’t Should Focus on Economy, Not Kurd Fight
New Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim can reach success on his post if he focuses on economic development of the country rather than fighting the Kurdish minority, Babakr Hoshawi told Sputnik.
"A violent crackdown on the Kurdish nationalist movement can only trigger a more violent response. This is a way to nowhere… If Yildirim focuses on Turkey’s economic development rather than on military actions in the [Kurdish] region, he can be successful on his post," Hoshawi said.
Erdogan and Yildirim are strongly opposed to resuming talks with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which Ankara considers a terrorist organization. Yildirim stated last week that operations against the PKK would continue "until it ends its armed actions."
Tensions between Ankara and the Kurds escalated in July 2015 as fighting between the PKK and the Turkish army resumed. Ankara has imposed several round-the-clock curfews in Kurdish-populated towns, preventing civilians from fleeing the regions where the military operations are underway.