Government planning to form new ‘wise men' delegation
by Ali Ünal
ANKARAJan 18, 2016 - 12:00 am GMT+3
by Ali Ünal
Jan 18, 2016 12:00 am
While Turkish security forces are continuing operations against PKK terrorism in southeastern Turkey, sources from the Prime Ministry have said that the government is planning to gather a consultative committee, a kind of "wise men" delegation, with the purpose of pursuing dialogue with different segments of society with the ultimate goal being to end conflict in the region.
The new committee will consist of representatives from nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and opinion leaders representing various ideas and social groups. The "wise men" delegation, which refers to consultative committees dedicated to Turkey's reconciliation process, were initiated by the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) in April 2013. The group of 63 was tasked with explaining the peace process to the public and promoting negotiating efforts. The group consists of a seven-region commission including respected intellectuals, civil society leaders, businessmen and politicians who were selected by the government to span the spectrum of Turkish society. The delegation traveled across Turkey in order to explain the Kurdish peace process initiated in 2012 to end the decade-old conflict with the PKK, which lasted until July 22 of last year, when the PKK ended the cease-fire and resumed its attacks on Turkish security forces.
In order to find a peaceful solution which would end the conflict in Turkey's southeast, the government has opened dialogue channels with representatives of society. In recent weeks, Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu held several meetings with members of the Peace Group, a delegation formed by some of the country's most prominent intellectuals, which focuses on discussing the dimensions of the terror problem. Members of the new "wise men" delegation are expected to be announced by the Prime Ministry, once the purpose and working methods of the groups have fully fermented.