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Original Articles

The Kurdish Issue in June 2011 Elections: Continuity or Change in Turkey's Democratization?

Pages 169-189
Published online: 06 Jun 2012
 
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This article analyzes the Kurdish issue in various aspects before the June 2011 elections. The main research questions include what constitutes the major grievances of the Kurds; how the ongoing conflict is framed as “Kurdish issue” versus a “terrorism problem” and how major political parties in Turkey approach the issue and its solution in their 2011 election manifestos and rallies. This article contributes the literature on the Kurdish issue in particular and Turkey's democratic consolidation in general by identifying the problems and political views of all relevant sides. Finally, based on both a historical and empirical analysis, the article reflects on the reasons why the Adalet ve Kalkınma Partisi and Barış ve Demokrasi Partisi have become the major players in addressing the Kurdish issue after the 2011 election. The findings are relevant for Turkish democratic consolidation in particular and the democratization literature in general.

 

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