Showing posts tagged as "turkey"

Showing posts tagged turkey

11 Jul
Kurdish Independence: Harder Than It Looks | Joost Hilterman
Joost Hilterman is the Chief Operating Officer at the International Crisis Group
The jihadist blitz through northwestern Iraq has ended the fragile peace that was established after the 2007-2008 US surge. It has cast grave doubt on the basic capacity of the Iraqi army—reconstituted, trained and equipped at great expense by Washington—to control the country, and it could bring down the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, whose eight-year reign has been marred by mismanagement and sectarian polarization. But for Iraqi Kurds, the offensive by the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) and other groups has offered a dramatic opportunity: a chance to expand their own influence beyond Iraqi Kurdistan and take possession of other parts of northern Iraq they’ve long claimed as theirs.
At the heart of these “disputed areas” is the strategic city of Kirkuk, which the disciplined and highly motivated Kurdish Peshmerga took over in mid-June, after Iraqi soldiers stationed there fled in fear of advancing jihadists. A charmless city of slightly less than one million people, Kirkuk betrays little of its past as an important Ottoman garrison town. The desolate ruin of an ancient citadel, sitting on a mound overlooking the dried-out Khasa River, is one of the few hints of the city’s earlier glory. Yet Kirkuk lies on top of one of Iraq’s largest oil fields, and with its crucial location directly adjacent to the Kurdish region, the city is the prize in the Kurds’ long journey to independence, a town they call their Jerusalem. When their Peshmerga fighters easily took over a few weeks ago, there was loud rejoicing throughout the Kurdish land.
But while the Kurds believe Kirkuk’s riches give them crucial economic foundations for a sustainable independent state, the city’s ethnic heterogeneity raises serious questions about their claims to it. Not only is Kirkuk’s population—as with that of many other Iraqi cities, including Baghdad itself—deeply intermixed. The disputed status of its vast oil field also stands as a major obstacle to any attempt to divide the country’s oil revenues equitably. To anyone who advocates dividing Iraq into neat ethnic and sectarian groups, Kirkuk shows just how challenging that would be in practice.
The definitive loss of Kirkuk and the giant oil field surrounding it could precipitate the breakup of Iraq, and while the present government in Baghdad is in no position to resist Kurdish control, a restrengthened leadership might, in the future, seek to retake the city by force. For the Kurds, the sudden territorial gains may also not be the panacea they seem to think they are. The Kurdish oil industry is still much in development, and if the Kurdish region loses access to Baghdad’s annual budget allocations without a ready alternative, it is likely to face a severe economic crisis. Moreover, the same jihadist insurgency that has enabled Kurdish advances in the disputed territories is also a potent new threat to the Kurds themselves. So the taking of Kirkuk poses an urgent question: how important is Iraq’s stability to the Kurds’ own security and long-term aims?
I first visited Kirkuk some twenty-three years ago, driving from Baghdad and entering from the west. Coming up from the capital in those days one had little doubt that one was in Arab areas all the way to the outskirts of Kirkuk, while the city itself, like many urban conglomerations in the wider region, was home to many different ethnic and religious groups, none of them dominant. There were Shia mixed in with Sunnis, and along with three major ethnicities—Arab, Kurdish, and Turkic—the city contained a smaller population of Chaldo-Assyrian Christians, who claimed to be original inhabitants of what was known in ancient times as Arrapha. In fact, despite the Kurds’ strong presence in Kirkuk today, they were relatively late arrivals, having settled mostly in the years since the oil industry first took hold in the 1930s.
FULL ARTICLE (New York Times Review of Books)
Photo: Jorgen Nijman/flickr

Kurdish Independence: Harder Than It Looks | Joost Hilterman

Joost Hilterman is the Chief Operating Officer at the International Crisis Group

The jihadist blitz through northwestern Iraq has ended the fragile peace that was established after the 2007-2008 US surge. It has cast grave doubt on the basic capacity of the Iraqi army—reconstituted, trained and equipped at great expense by Washington—to control the country, and it could bring down the government of Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki, whose eight-year reign has been marred by mismanagement and sectarian polarization. But for Iraqi Kurds, the offensive by the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS) and other groups has offered a dramatic opportunity: a chance to expand their own influence beyond Iraqi Kurdistan and take possession of other parts of northern Iraq they’ve long claimed as theirs.

At the heart of these “disputed areas” is the strategic city of Kirkuk, which the disciplined and highly motivated Kurdish Peshmerga took over in mid-June, after Iraqi soldiers stationed there fled in fear of advancing jihadists. A charmless city of slightly less than one million people, Kirkuk betrays little of its past as an important Ottoman garrison town. The desolate ruin of an ancient citadel, sitting on a mound overlooking the dried-out Khasa River, is one of the few hints of the city’s earlier glory. Yet Kirkuk lies on top of one of Iraq’s largest oil fields, and with its crucial location directly adjacent to the Kurdish region, the city is the prize in the Kurds’ long journey to independence, a town they call their Jerusalem. When their Peshmerga fighters easily took over a few weeks ago, there was loud rejoicing throughout the Kurdish land.

But while the Kurds believe Kirkuk’s riches give them crucial economic foundations for a sustainable independent state, the city’s ethnic heterogeneity raises serious questions about their claims to it. Not only is Kirkuk’s population—as with that of many other Iraqi cities, including Baghdad itself—deeply intermixed. The disputed status of its vast oil field also stands as a major obstacle to any attempt to divide the country’s oil revenues equitably. To anyone who advocates dividing Iraq into neat ethnic and sectarian groups, Kirkuk shows just how challenging that would be in practice.

The definitive loss of Kirkuk and the giant oil field surrounding it could precipitate the breakup of Iraq, and while the present government in Baghdad is in no position to resist Kurdish control, a restrengthened leadership might, in the future, seek to retake the city by force. For the Kurds, the sudden territorial gains may also not be the panacea they seem to think they are. The Kurdish oil industry is still much in development, and if the Kurdish region loses access to Baghdad’s annual budget allocations without a ready alternative, it is likely to face a severe economic crisis. Moreover, the same jihadist insurgency that has enabled Kurdish advances in the disputed territories is also a potent new threat to the Kurds themselves. So the taking of Kirkuk poses an urgent question: how important is Iraq’s stability to the Kurds’ own security and long-term aims?

I first visited Kirkuk some twenty-three years ago, driving from Baghdad and entering from the west. Coming up from the capital in those days one had little doubt that one was in Arab areas all the way to the outskirts of Kirkuk, while the city itself, like many urban conglomerations in the wider region, was home to many different ethnic and religious groups, none of them dominant. There were Shia mixed in with Sunnis, and along with three major ethnicities—Arab, Kurdish, and Turkic—the city contained a smaller population of Chaldo-Assyrian Christians, who claimed to be original inhabitants of what was known in ancient times as Arrapha. In fact, despite the Kurds’ strong presence in Kirkuk today, they were relatively late arrivals, having settled mostly in the years since the oil industry first took hold in the 1930s.

FULL ARTICLE (New York Times Review of Books)

Photo: Jorgen Nijman/flickr

24 Jun
Refugee-hit Turkey’s new Syrian Kurdish Dilemmas | Hugh Pope (@HughPope)
Şenyurt, Turkey: Fleeing from fighting and hunger in north-eastern Syria a year and a half ago, Abdullah’s family found refuge in a crowded refugee camp in Turkey. Nine months later, his three-year-old son Mohammed caught meningitis. Fearing for the health of his other two children, Abdullah rented a room in a mud-brick house here in the small town of Şenyurt, joining the little-seen Kurdish minority among Turkey’s one million Syrian “urban refugees”.
As Mohammed lay immobile, Turkish hospitals tried to treat him. But doctors’ advice was largely unintelligible to Abdullah’s Kurdish- and Arabic-speaking family. Above all, Abdullah felt that the Turkish medicines weren’t good enough. So he returned to the country from which he had escaped, even taking the daily Syrian Airways flight from the northern town of Qamishli to Damascus in search of “stronger” medicine. “At least his eyes are open now”, Abdullah said.
Abdullah’s journeys are just one of many paradoxes on the eastern end of Turkey’s 911km-long border with Syria. Many stem from Turkey’s conflicted and evolving view of ethnic Kurds, who are the majority on both sides of the frontier here in Mardin province. Some in Turkey challenge the legitimacy of the border itself, which, drawn a century ago by imperial Britain and France, cuts a once united town in half along the railway line – Syria’s al-Darbasiya to the south, Turkey’s Şenyurt to the north. Others believe Turkey would be mad to do anything to open up the border and empower the Syrian Kurds who dominate three cantons south of the border. They believe they have a mortal enemy in the main Syrian Kurdish militia, the Democratic Union Party (Partiya Yekîtiya Demokrat, PYD), the Syrian sister party of Turkey’s Kurdistan Workers’ Party (Partiya Karkarane Kurdistan, PKK), which has waged an insurgent war against Ankara for three decades. (For more on the PYD, see Crisis Group’s 8 May report Flight of Icarus: The PYD’s Precarious Rise in Syria.)
Şenyurt represents a compromise between these two positions: little aid ever gets across the Syrian Kurdish sections of the border, but most days Turkish soldiers allow 500-600 Syrians, mostly Kurds, to cross each way between an improvised chicane of sandbags by a railway siding. Just ten metres away flies the flag of the PYD’s first checkpoint. To many Kurds in the region, such normalisation is a glimpse of hope that a peace process sporadically under way since the late 2000s between Turkey and the PKK may be leading to more relaxed policies, not just in Turkey, but also towards the PYD.
FULL ARTICLE (Crisis Group: In Pursuit of Peace)
Photo: CRISIS GROUP/Hugh Pope

Refugee-hit Turkey’s new Syrian Kurdish Dilemmas | Hugh Pope (@HughPope)

Şenyurt, Turkey: Fleeing from fighting and hunger in north-eastern Syria a year and a half ago, Abdullah’s family found refuge in a crowded refugee camp in Turkey. Nine months later, his three-year-old son Mohammed caught meningitis. Fearing for the health of his other two children, Abdullah rented a room in a mud-brick house here in the small town of Şenyurt, joining the little-seen Kurdish minority among Turkey’s one million Syrian “urban refugees”.

As Mohammed lay immobile, Turkish hospitals tried to treat him. But doctors’ advice was largely unintelligible to Abdullah’s Kurdish- and Arabic-speaking family. Above all, Abdullah felt that the Turkish medicines weren’t good enough. So he returned to the country from which he had escaped, even taking the daily Syrian Airways flight from the northern town of Qamishli to Damascus in search of “stronger” medicine. “At least his eyes are open now”, Abdullah said.

Abdullah’s journeys are just one of many paradoxes on the eastern end of Turkey’s 911km-long border with Syria. Many stem from Turkey’s conflicted and evolving view of ethnic Kurds, who are the majority on both sides of the frontier here in Mardin province. Some in Turkey challenge the legitimacy of the border itself, which, drawn a century ago by imperial Britain and France, cuts a once united town in half along the railway line – Syria’s al-Darbasiya to the south, Turkey’s Şenyurt to the north. Others believe Turkey would be mad to do anything to open up the border and empower the Syrian Kurds who dominate three cantons south of the border. They believe they have a mortal enemy in the main Syrian Kurdish militia, the Democratic Union Party (Partiya Yekîtiya Demokrat, PYD), the Syrian sister party of Turkey’s Kurdistan Workers’ Party (Partiya Karkarane Kurdistan, PKK), which has waged an insurgent war against Ankara for three decades. (For more on the PYD, see Crisis Group’s 8 May report Flight of Icarus: The PYD’s Precarious Rise in Syria.)

Şenyurt represents a compromise between these two positions: little aid ever gets across the Syrian Kurdish sections of the border, but most days Turkish soldiers allow 500-600 Syrians, mostly Kurds, to cross each way between an improvised chicane of sandbags by a railway siding. Just ten metres away flies the flag of the PYD’s first checkpoint. To many Kurds in the region, such normalisation is a glimpse of hope that a peace process sporadically under way since the late 2000s between Turkey and the PKK may be leading to more relaxed policies, not just in Turkey, but also towards the PYD.

FULL ARTICLE (Crisis Group: In Pursuit of Peace)

Photo: CRISIS GROUP/Hugh Pope

20 Jun
In Support For Kurds, Does Turkey Hope For A Redrawn Middle East Map?
Hugh Pope, Crisis Group’s Deputy Director for Europe and Central Asia, spoke with NPR’s Robert Siegel about the complex relationships among Turkey, Iraq, and the Kurds in the wake of the ongoing crisis in Iraq.
Listen Here (NPR)
Photo: fredmalm/flickr

In Support For Kurds, Does Turkey Hope For A Redrawn Middle East Map?

Hugh Pope, Crisis Group’s Deputy Director for Europe and Central Asia, spoke with NPR’s Robert Siegel about the complex relationships among Turkey, Iraq, and the Kurds in the wake of the ongoing crisis in Iraq.

Listen Here (NPR)

Photo: fredmalm/flickr

5 Jun
"At different levels of Turkish policy-making, including at the top, radical elements from Syria are now very clearly recognized as a main security threat to Turkey."

Didem Collinsworth, “Turkey Blacklists Al Qaeda-Linked Syrian Rebel Group In Sign Of Growing Concern Over Extremists”, Huffington Post

4 Jun
Turkey Blacklists Al Qaeda-Linked Syrian Rebel Group In Sign Of Growing Concern Over Extremists | Sophia Jones
A year and a half after the United States designated the al Qaeda-linked Syrian rebel group Jabhat al-Nusra a terrorist organization, Turkey has followed suit, signaling what experts say is a shift in its approach to the Syrian civil war.
The country’s Official Gazette said in a statement that Turkey will now freeze any assets linked to the group. Turkey, which backs the uprising against Syrian President Bashar Assad and hosts more than 700,000 Syrian refugees, has been accused of aiding extremist Islamist militants and failing to stop them from crossing the border to join the fight against Assad. The change in policy, experts say, shows that the country wants to put a stop to those claims and is increasingly concerned about the rise of extremists.
“Significant shifts have been underway behind the scenes in recent months within a number of key opposition-supporting states, including Turkey, which have had as their focus the adoption of a dual-track policy of bolstering moderate rebels and isolating extremists,” said Charles Lister, a Syria analyst and visiting fellow at the Brookings Doha Center.
FULL ARTICLE (Huffington Post)
Photo: Asitimes/flickr

Turkey Blacklists Al Qaeda-Linked Syrian Rebel Group In Sign Of Growing Concern Over Extremists | Sophia Jones

A year and a half after the United States designated the al Qaeda-linked Syrian rebel group Jabhat al-Nusra a terrorist organization, Turkey has followed suit, signaling what experts say is a shift in its approach to the Syrian civil war.

The country’s Official Gazette said in a statement that Turkey will now freeze any assets linked to the group. Turkey, which backs the uprising against Syrian President Bashar Assad and hosts more than 700,000 Syrian refugees, has been accused of aiding extremist Islamist militants and failing to stop them from crossing the border to join the fight against Assad. The change in policy, experts say, shows that the country wants to put a stop to those claims and is increasingly concerned about the rise of extremists.

“Significant shifts have been underway behind the scenes in recent months within a number of key opposition-supporting states, including Turkey, which have had as their focus the adoption of a dual-track policy of bolstering moderate rebels and isolating extremists,” said Charles Lister, a Syria analyst and visiting fellow at the Brookings Doha Center.

FULL ARTICLE (Huffington Post)

Photo: Asitimes/flickr

22 May
Looking for Options on the EU-Turkey Relationship | Hugh Pope (@Hugh_Pope)
Gathering round an embassy table in Ankara this month, a dozen European diplomats and Turkish academics met to brainstorm about their countries’ increasingly dysfunctional relationship. Turkey seems stuck in a perpetual European waiting room, theoretically there to negotiate entry into the EU. But both sides are becoming impatient and flirting with the idea of either bolting the door – in the case of Europe – or storming off, in the case of Turkey.
The debate leap-frogged over the usual running commentary over which negotiating chapter has or (mostly) hasn’t opened, how to shift the immovable object of the Cyprus problem (see our reporting on Cyprus), or whether Europe’s or Turkey’s leaders actually want Turkish accession to happen at all. Instead, the group tried to work out what both sides really wanted, and how they could get it.
Interestingly, for a country often seen by Europeans as overly emotional, Turkey was thought by this group to seek mostly common sense advantages for its 76 million people. These included hassle-free access to EU visas, markets and technology; influence over EU decision-making, especially about trade, and a continuation of the investment that surged after accession talks started in 2005 (three quarters of which comes from EU countries). Nearly as important, however, was the ambition to be treated as a respected equal, to keep full control over sovereignty and domestic and internal policies, and to be able to project Turkish influence into its neighbourhood and the world at large.
Hugh Pope is Crisis Group’s Deputy Program Director for Europe and Central Asia.
READ THE FULL ARTICLE AT CRISIS GROUP’S BLOG "SOLVING THE EU-TURKEY-CYPRUS TRIANGLE"

Looking for Options on the EU-Turkey Relationship | Hugh Pope (@Hugh_Pope)

Gathering round an embassy table in Ankara this month, a dozen European diplomats and Turkish academics met to brainstorm about their countries’ increasingly dysfunctional relationship. Turkey seems stuck in a perpetual European waiting room, theoretically there to negotiate entry into the EU. But both sides are becoming impatient and flirting with the idea of either bolting the door – in the case of Europe – or storming off, in the case of Turkey.

The debate leap-frogged over the usual running commentary over which negotiating chapter has or (mostly) hasn’t opened, how to shift the immovable object of the Cyprus problem (see our reporting on Cyprus), or whether Europe’s or Turkey’s leaders actually want Turkish accession to happen at all. Instead, the group tried to work out what both sides really wanted, and how they could get it.

Interestingly, for a country often seen by Europeans as overly emotional, Turkey was thought by this group to seek mostly common sense advantages for its 76 million people. These included hassle-free access to EU visas, markets and technology; influence over EU decision-making, especially about trade, and a continuation of the investment that surged after accession talks started in 2005 (three quarters of which comes from EU countries). Nearly as important, however, was the ambition to be treated as a respected equal, to keep full control over sovereignty and domestic and internal policies, and to be able to project Turkish influence into its neighbourhood and the world at large.

Hugh Pope is Crisis Group’s Deputy Program Director for Europe and Central Asia.

READ THE FULL ARTICLE AT CRISIS GROUP’S BLOG "SOLVING THE EU-TURKEY-CYPRUS TRIANGLE"

12 May
Flight of Icarus? The PYD’s Precarious Rise in Syria
Erbil/Brussels  |   8 May 2014
The PYD (Kurdish Democratic Union Party) has imposed its dominance in northern Syria, but its long-run prospects – like those of the areas it controls – depend on the party’s ability to adopt a more balanced and inclusive strategy.
In its latest report, Flight of Icarus? The PYD’s Precarious Rise in Syria, the International Crisis Group examines the implications of the Kurdish group’s military strategy and governance project in the north of the war-torn country. Since mid-2012, when the regime withdrew from the Kurdish areas, the PYD and its armed wing, the People’s Protection Units, have filled the security void and fended off the jihadi opposition. In November 2013 – drawing on its legitimacy as an offshoot of the PKK, the Kurdish Turkish insurgent movement – the PYD proclaimed a transitional administration of Rojava (Western Kurdistan) over three predominantly Kurdish enclaves. Viewed by some as a step toward stability and advancement of Kurdish aspirations, PYD dominance in fact relies on pragmatic cooperation with the regime; an authoritarian inheritance from a group (the PKK) that many countries regard as terrorist; and fragile regional alliances.
The report’s major findings and recommendations are:
The PYD needs to normalise its relationship with its non-Kurdish environment by reaching out to other minorities and to the more pragmatic strands within the Syrian opposition, without which it will remain hostage to its connections with a regime that at some point likely will turn on it.
The PYD should reach out also to other Kurdish factions and diversify the region’s access to re-sources, which today in large part is a product of its cooperation with the regime.
The PYD ought to design, in coordination with other Kurdish and non-Kurdish factions, a strategy to provide services in a decentralised and inclusive manner.
“In northern Syria, as elsewhere, the regime aims to compel people to take refuge in their sectarian and communitarian identities and to divide those who support it from those who oppose it” says Maria Fantappie, Iraq Analyst. “Syria’s Kurdish areas need a project, whether called Rojava or something else, that can unite Kurdish and non-Kurdish elements populating these areas and challenge the regime’s strategy”.
“Kurdish rights, not to mention longer-term local stability, are not likely to be realised through a part-nership of convenience between a Kurdish movement claiming autonomy and a centralising authori-tarian regime”, says Peter Harling, Project Director for Iraq, Lebanon and Syria and Senior Middle East and North Africa Adviser. “The tasks before Syria’s Kurds are overcoming internal divisions and, together with all peoples of northern Syria, forming a more inclusive, coherent strategy for addressing the specific needs of this part of the country – including protection of the rights of both Kurds and other constituencies who live in their midst”.
READ THE FULL REPORT

Flight of Icarus? The PYD’s Precarious Rise in Syria

Erbil/Brussels  |   8 May 2014

The PYD (Kurdish Democratic Union Party) has imposed its dominance in northern Syria, but its long-run prospects – like those of the areas it controls – depend on the party’s ability to adopt a more balanced and inclusive strategy.

In its latest report, Flight of Icarus? The PYD’s Precarious Rise in Syria, the International Crisis Group examines the implications of the Kurdish group’s military strategy and governance project in the north of the war-torn country. Since mid-2012, when the regime withdrew from the Kurdish areas, the PYD and its armed wing, the People’s Protection Units, have filled the security void and fended off the jihadi opposition. In November 2013 – drawing on its legitimacy as an offshoot of the PKK, the Kurdish Turkish insurgent movement – the PYD proclaimed a transitional administration of Rojava (Western Kurdistan) over three predominantly Kurdish enclaves. Viewed by some as a step toward stability and advancement of Kurdish aspirations, PYD dominance in fact relies on pragmatic cooperation with the regime; an authoritarian inheritance from a group (the PKK) that many countries regard as terrorist; and fragile regional alliances.

The report’s major findings and recommendations are:

  • The PYD needs to normalise its relationship with its non-Kurdish environment by reaching out to other minorities and to the more pragmatic strands within the Syrian opposition, without which it will remain hostage to its connections with a regime that at some point likely will turn on it.
  • The PYD should reach out also to other Kurdish factions and diversify the region’s access to re-sources, which today in large part is a product of its cooperation with the regime.
  • The PYD ought to design, in coordination with other Kurdish and non-Kurdish factions, a strategy to provide services in a decentralised and inclusive manner.

“In northern Syria, as elsewhere, the regime aims to compel people to take refuge in their sectarian and communitarian identities and to divide those who support it from those who oppose it” says Maria Fantappie, Iraq Analyst. “Syria’s Kurdish areas need a project, whether called Rojava or something else, that can unite Kurdish and non-Kurdish elements populating these areas and challenge the regime’s strategy”.

“Kurdish rights, not to mention longer-term local stability, are not likely to be realised through a part-nership of convenience between a Kurdish movement claiming autonomy and a centralising authori-tarian regime”, says Peter Harling, Project Director for Iraq, Lebanon and Syria and Senior Middle East and North Africa Adviser. “The tasks before Syria’s Kurds are overcoming internal divisions and, together with all peoples of northern Syria, forming a more inclusive, coherent strategy for addressing the specific needs of this part of the country – including protection of the rights of both Kurds and other constituencies who live in their midst”.

READ THE FULL REPORT

How world can respond to Syria’s refugee crisis | CNN
“The Syrian crisis crashed onto neighboring Turkey’s doorstep three years ago and the humanitarian, policy and security costs continue to rise,” the International Crisis Group notes in a new report. “Ankara needs to find a sustainable, long-term arrangement with the international community to care for the Syrians who arrive daily.”
But what could a long-term solution look like? Didem Akyel Collinsworth, Turkey and Cyprus analyst for International Crisis Group’s Turkey/Cyprus Project, answers CNN Global Public Square readers’ questions on the issue.
FULL Q&A (CNN)
Photo: İHH İnsani Yardım Vakfı/TURKEY/flickr

How world can respond to Syria’s refugee crisis | CNN

“The Syrian crisis crashed onto neighboring Turkey’s doorstep three years ago and the humanitarian, policy and security costs continue to rise,” the International Crisis Group notes in a new report. “Ankara needs to find a sustainable, long-term arrangement with the international community to care for the Syrians who arrive daily.”

But what could a long-term solution look like? Didem Akyel Collinsworth, Turkey and Cyprus analyst for International Crisis Group’s Turkey/Cyprus Project, answers CNN Global Public Square readers’ questions on the issue.

FULL Q&A (CNN)

Photo: İHH İnsani Yardım Vakfı/TURKEY/flickr

7 May

Ever wonder what it’s like to work for Crisis Group?

In this video, travel with Crisis Group analysts as they investigate conflicts in the field and offer creative solutions.

5 May
Syrians in Turkey urgently need housing, education, new report says | Tanya Talaga
Displaced Syrians can be found everywhere inside Turkish cities — estimates place the numbers at nearly 1 million — and they are desperately in need of housing, work permits and schools for children, says a new report.
Three years ago the human tragedy of the Syrian conflict began to flood into Turkey, leaving the state no choice but to open its doors and take in those fleeing the bloodshed.
Since then, Turkey has spent nearly $3 billion on emergency relief, with little international help, while 75 Turkish citizens have been killed in spillover violence.
No one knows exactly how many Syrians are now living in Turkey, besides the 220,000 living inside emergency relief camps lining the border, but the International Crisis Group believes the number of urban Syrians could be close to 1 million.
As Turkish patience and resources stretch thin, the easiest solution forward is to further integrate Syrians into Turkish society, if they wish, says the ICG in a new report called “The Rising Costs of Turkey’s Syrian Quagmire.”
FULL ARTICLE (The Toronto Star)
Photo: michael_swan/flickr

Syrians in Turkey urgently need housing, education, new report says | Tanya Talaga

Displaced Syrians can be found everywhere inside Turkish cities — estimates place the numbers at nearly 1 million — and they are desperately in need of housing, work permits and schools for children, says a new report.

Three years ago the human tragedy of the Syrian conflict began to flood into Turkey, leaving the state no choice but to open its doors and take in those fleeing the bloodshed.

Since then, Turkey has spent nearly $3 billion on emergency relief, with little international help, while 75 Turkish citizens have been killed in spillover violence.

No one knows exactly how many Syrians are now living in Turkey, besides the 220,000 living inside emergency relief camps lining the border, but the International Crisis Group believes the number of urban Syrians could be close to 1 million.

As Turkish patience and resources stretch thin, the easiest solution forward is to further integrate Syrians into Turkish society, if they wish, says the ICG in a new report called “The Rising Costs of Turkey’s Syrian Quagmire.”

FULL ARTICLE (The Toronto Star)

Photo: michael_swan/flickr