Discussion about the Objectives of the Turkmen
The 12th of the Meeting of Turkmen Intellectuals which is periodically organized by the ORSAM was held on Saturday, March 5, 2011 in the ORSAM conference hall. The students who are in Turkey for education showed a great interest to the meeting that was directed by the ORSAM Adviser Habib Hürmüzlü and which was entitled as “Perspectives About the Objectives of the Turkmen” . In the meeting which was organized as two sessions, the speakers shared their knowledge in the first session; in the second session the negotiators stated their opinions and this session was ended with the question and answer period.
The speakers participating in the meeting:
• Associate. Prof. Dr. Tarık Gündüz,
• Dr. Cüneyt Mengü,
• Hasan Demirci,
• Haydar Hadi Dakuklu,
And the negotiators participating in the meeting:
• Aydın Beyatlı,
• Mehmet Behcet İzzet,
• Adil Selbi,
• Mehmet Suphi
Tarık Gündüz, the first at getting the floor, told that for the aim of reaching an objective the language phenomenon must be protected and it must be transferred from generations to generations. Stating that the objective that was clearly declared in written for the first time by the Turkmen was presented by the National Turkmen Party, Tarik Gündüz said that this objective was about Turkmen’s obtaining their social, cultural, political and economic rights in the territorial integrity of Iraq. Claiming that the objective unity was weak among the Turkmen, Gündüz explained that the Turkmen institutions and the Turkmen leaders in Iraq and the other countries must establish a platform by coming together and draw a road map after agreeing upon the objectives.
Supporting his ideas by giving examples in history, Hasan Demirci who took the floor after Tarık Gündüz, said that the Turkmen proved their existence in the process of history, but the Turkmen abstain from the Iraqi identity, which harms to the Turkmen, and for this reason the Iraqi administration alienates the Turkmen. “For an objective, you need to have belief” said Demirci and added that the Turkmen have an immediate need for a decision mechanism that they believe in. Pointing out that all the groups that shape the Turkmen policy and try to be effective in it have different priorities from each other, Demirci stated that all these priorities must be combined and canalized to a single institution, and all these groups must work collectively.
Haydar Dakuklu, one of the Turkmen students, said that the objectives of societies generally correspond to the social objectives; however the Turkmen do not meet in a common point in terms of the political objectives. Emphasizing that in respect of the current situation, the territorial and national integrity in Iraq has been broken, Davuklu questioned why the Turkmen insist still on the territorial and national integrity of Iraq. Stating that the objectives of the Turkmen must be realistic, sustainable and long termed, Davuklu expressed that the Turkmen must be in agreement in terms of their objectives. Davuklu also mentioned that defending the Turkmeneli Region is of utmost importance and added that the objectives of the societies must be oriented towards the social motivation and the youth.
Defining the objective as an indispensable reason of life for people, Cüneyt Mengü, the final speaker, said that the power should be parallel to the objective. Stating that the first objective of the Turkmen is to be mentioned in the Constitution as the third nation in Iraq, Mengü told that the main objective of the Turkmen must be to obtain some privileges in the regions where there is an intense Turkmen population, which was defined as a legal autonomous by Mengü.
After the speakers, Aydın Beyatlı, one of the negotiators, stated that the strategy and the objective must be dealt separately and the Turkmen have adopted different objectives depending on the conditions of the period. Supporting that it will be more realistic if the Turkmen choose an objective in accordance with their force, Beyatlı said that in the meetings of the opposition during the 1990s all the groups in Iraq had accepted that the Turkmen population constituted the 6% of the Iraq population, and now this percentage of %6 can be brought forward as an administrative, economic, social and political demand. Beyatlı said also that a portion of %6 taken from the Iraqi government will be a significant step for the Turkmen and then the real percentage of the Turkmen existence which is 13% can be demanded.
Another negotiator Mehmet Behçet İzzet said that the foremost objective of the Turkmen is the constitutional recognition. Stating that the Turkmen should be ready for any kind of possibility in Iraq, İzzet argued that there may be a change in Iraq as well like the ones having happened in the Middle East. Expressing that in that context the Turkmen must possess an economic and political force, İzzet opposed to the claim that Turkey has not made any contribution for the Turkmen and said that the Turkmen should consider about what they have demanded from Turkey until today.
One of the Turkmen students, Mehmet Suphi said that the Turkmen youth also must play a role and asked to the Turkmen elders for letting the Turkmen youth for this. Supporting the idea that the Turkmen must be realistic, Suphi claimed that in these conditions the Turkmen do not have enough power to determine their national interests. “The Turkmen policy is indexed to the individuals.” said Suphi and added that every Turkmen politician talk about the necessities, but these necessities are not supplied even by them. “If there is an anthem, a flag, a regional map, why is not this defended?” asked Suphi and underlined the importance of that the Turkmen follow the policies which are appropriate to the current situation.
The final negotiator Adil Selbi emphasized that the first objective of the Turkmen in Iraq is to conserve their existence. Stating that he can draw various strategies, Selbi said that a partnership commission must be founded among the Turkmen institutions for the aim of determining the objectives and the strategies. “The Turkmen must act in an organized manner.” said Selbi and mentioned the importance of strengthening the Turkmen identity. Expressing that the Turkmen have some problems at determining their objectives, Selbi said that there is not a communication or connection among the Turkmen regions, the people living in the Turkmen regions are unaware of each other, and there is rivalry among these regions.
MARCH 9 2011