The independence of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is being discussed once and more. Most recently, KRG President Massoud Barzani cited the disintegration of Yugoslavia and Czechoslovakia in reference to Iraq’s future. He inflamed the longstanding discussion about independence, saying, “Kurds have the right to self-determination just as Eastern European people do.”
Turkey is steadily sealing its frontier with Syria, long infiltrated in both directions by fighters and smugglers, with fences, minefields, ditches and a wall that will snake even through the most mountainous regions.
Main opposition social democratic Republican People’s Party (CHP) head Kemal Kilicdaroglu on Jan. 24 paid a visit to the monument in memory of journalist Ugur Mumcu on the 24th anniversary of the latter’s assassination. The murder still remains unsolved, though it had been claimed by two separate organizations: The Islamic Movement and Kurdish Hezbollah.
It was on Oct. 11, when the head of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) Devlet Bahceli revived a long-standing discussion on the introduction of the presidential system and signaled his party’s support to a charter amendment to be drafted by the Justice and Development Party (AKP).
A nationwide internet blackout has blocked access to internet-based applications WhatsApp, Twitter, YouTube and Facebook in Turkey on Nov. 4.
Turkey is revisiting a long-standing discussion on whether it should adopt a presidential system through a constitutional amendment after Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahceli opened a new page on the issue. Underlining that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had consistently been violating the constitution by exceeding his boundaries, Bahceli said it should be up to the Turkish people as to whether the de facto presidential system should be legalized even though his party was against a shift to the presidential system.
In mid-April of 2003, two weeks after the U.S. 173rd paratroop division had taken Kirkuk, eleven Turkish men were detained by American forces near the city. They were Turkish special forces dressed as civilians but carrying AK-47s and body-armor. “They did not come here with a pure heart,” U.S. commander Col. Bill Mayville told reporters. “Their objective is to create an environment that can be used by Turkey to send a large peacekeeping force into Kirkuk.” The headline in Time magazine described the event as “The Turks Enter Iraq.” Thirteen years later, the Turkish presence is as robust as ever and seeks to influence post-ISIS Iraq.
A private company has reportedly taken over Gulenist schools in Iraqi Kurdistan. According to the Dwarozh news website, Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) Education Minister Bishwan Sadeq said a private Kurdish company, the Khoshnaw Group, bought the secondary schools and colleges Sept. 19. There has thus far been no official or legal objection or protest registered against the move.
Shifting alignments in the aftermath of the failed coup could bring peace to Yemen and Syria—but only if regional leaders can agree on some rules.
If Turkey leaves NATO, the risks to its security are minimal - but the alliance would suffer if it quits / Marwan Bishara.