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 EU Parliament president recommends the creation of a Kurdish autonomous region in Turkey

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EU Parliament president recommends the creation of a Kurdish autonomous region in Turkey  31.5.2012  






European Parliament president Martin Schulz looks on during a press conference in Ankara, Turkey on May 28, 2012. Photo: Getty Images

Euro speaker links Kurdish autonomy to EU accession

May 31
, 2012


ISTANBUL, — The president of the European Parliament has linked the resolution of Turkey’s Kurdish issue to its eventual accession to membership in the European Union.

“My advice is given in the framework Turkey’s of pre-EU accession strategy: We must try to convince both sides that it is possible [to create something] between a sovereign state and [a region] with a high degree of autonomy while [maintaining] the … territorial integrity of the country. That is my humble advice,” Martin Schulz, European Parliament president, said yesterday in Istanbul. Schulz was speaking at a ceremony at Bilgi University at which he was awarded an honorary doctorate.

Kurdish problem is Turkey’s domestic issue

The Kurdish problem is a domestic problem for Turkey, Schulz said, but added that the European Union is concerned about the rights and recognition of minorities in its member countries.

Schulz said he was confronted with the Kurdish problem when he was a socialist mayor in Germany. “In the early 80s I had a lot of refugees in my city coming from Kurdistan, and I was immediately confronted with the problems that I had in my city,www.ekurd.net where among the citizens of Turkish origin, half considered themselves Kurds and the other half Turks. This was my reality. And the first part of my answer to you is that there is a Kurdish problem.” Schulz also mentioned the success of northern Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG). “You know that the northern part of Iraq has an autonomous Kurdish government. Mr. [Massoud] Barzani [president of the KRG] is a regional leader, being of Kurdish origin, and considers himself a Kurdish leader. This is not a problem … for Turkey, and it is not a problem for us or for Iraq.”

By Erdem Güneş - Hürriyet Daily News

Copyright ©, respective author or news agency, hurriyetdailynews.com

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