Columnists Ferai Tinc, Taha Akyol, Rauf Tamer and Hasan Bülent Kahraman are all in agreement about the fact that the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party (DTP) should not be closed.
However, their opposition is not rooted in support for the party itself, but rather in a desire to foil alleged plans of the PKK.
Tinc: "DTP wants to be closed"
Ferai Tinc of the "Hürriyet" newspaper argued that "Erdogan is against the closure of the DTP, but hte DTP itself is determined to be closed." He added, "The speeches the DTP made at the rallies in Van and the calls for 'resistance' make clear that there is a political attitude which hopes for success from a deepening crisis. The government, part of the opposition and the media are increasingly opposing the closure of the DTP, but the DTP wants to be closed."
Tinc also questioned how sincere the government's call for disarmament was, asking: "As long as soldiers in Diyarbakir march and shout the slogan 'One language', then is the invitation to do politics not meaningless? This opening should not just become a meaningless piece of advice."
Tamer:"It is up to what the law says"
Rauf Tamer of the "Vatan" newspaper wrote that "if it were up to me, I would say do not close them, but it is whatever the law says." He adds a few words of advice to those who are protesting against closure demands:
"Gentlemen! ..the attention of the domestic and international public, of all the world, has been drawn to cross-border operations for weeks. There is no one apart from you who does not call the terrorists terroists by now. The seriousness of the issue, the extent of the operation, this was all decided at the White House...But you pretend as if nothing has happened and support subversion and incitement."
Kahraman:"Give DTP time"
Hasan Bülent Kahraman of the "Sabah" newspaper also argues that the DTP should not be closed: "It was clear that the Kurds had come to an important junction after the 2007 elections. The votes for the Justice and Development Party (AKP) in Southeast Anatolia and the ensuing number of "yes" votes in the referendum showed that people are in need of a new formation. This new formation is getting rid of Öcalan."
Kahraman is of the opinion that the DTP has made big mistakes, and that the biggest mistake has been "not to be able to produce politics." "The DTP has not been able to follow the principle of democratisation. It did not distance itself from terrorism. Nevertheless, however, the party must continue. If it does continue and its right to speak out is protected, then it will become convinced after some time and will oppose PKK terrrorism."
Taha Akyol of the "Milliyet" newspaper said that "even if it is legally acceptable to close the DTP, it is politically wrong."
"Closing or not closing a party is government strategy. Countries arrange this according to the struggle against terrorism and their understanding of national unity."
According to Akyol, closing the party would be a mistake because "it is the PKK which has decided to close the DTP anyway. That is why we have seen the party behaving wildly." (NZ/AG)