The impending danger in the region in the aftermath of northern Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government's (KRG) independence referendum has not been averted yet, but the quest for a new alternative is on the agenda. The negotiations between Turkey, Iran and Iraq's central government are ongoing. In the forthcoming days, the central government will also meet Masoud Barzani.
Thanks to these negotiations, the global plots revolving around the region can possibly be defeated. The region, particularly the Kurdish population, needs such a solution. Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's latest remarks on the subject relieved all the political agents. Erdoğan initially drew attention to the extent of the threat:
"The referendum in northern Iraq is a new attempt to stab our region in the heart with a dagger. The issue is not the right of the Kurds."
Then he reiterated the main principle that must be followed: "We have made every effort to resolve the crisis in the region with effectiveness, wisdom and compromise, and we will [continue]."
And subsequently, he pointed a way to a solution: "Our greatest wish is the solution of the issue with effectiveness and common sense as soon as possible without aggravating it. If the KRG shows the virtue of correcting its mistake, the Turkish state and nation will continue siding with them."
But how did the KRG take this approach? As a matter of fact, they are also in a similar quest. Barzani is aware of the fact that the recent step will disrupt the region and lead to profound changes, but he is now pondering the ways to return from this point with minimum damage. The KRG is also aware that the rupture of relations established with Turkey over the last couple of years will not be in favor of the Iraqi Kurds. Even at this stage, Turkey displays the utmost sensitivity to the issue of embargo.
KRG Prime Minister Nechirvan Barzani has lately intensified the search for a solution by insistently calling some political actors and opinion leaders in Turkey. He is alleged to have said that "We are searching for a way that will not offend us."
Here lies the tender spot. Such quandaries can be occasionally experienced in critical ethnicity-related issues across the world, but there is always a reasonable solution. Coming up with such a solution depends on political deftness. Currently, we are at this stage. And it is highly wondered what the expected backstep will be.
Will the referendum be declared null and void, or will it be suspended? While the first option will cancel out Barzani's effect in the region, the second option will be evaluated as a threat especially among the nationalist circles in Turkey, Iran and Iraq.
Over the past few days, I spoke to several opinion leaders and political actors in Ankara, Istanbul and Diyarbakır. I have come up with this result after listening to everyone's mutual expectation: The KRG administration must leave the referendum issue to the consent of Iraq's central government.
In other words, a step with regard to independence will not be taken without the approval of the central government. Also, Masoud Barzani's resignation stands out as another option as he said that he would stand back following the referendum.
We will see how all these steps will affect the domestic politics of northern Iraq. Still, there is no way that could introduce an amicable resolution other than that.
A reasonable recommendation for a solution to the issue that would unravel all the global plots in the region will favor everyone.