New War On Armenia’s Doorstep?: Kurds, Turks end truce

Another wave of tensions in the relations between Kurds and the Turkish state may change the balance of forces in the region and even reshape its borders, which cannot but have influence on Armenian affairs as well.

Turkey convenes on Tuesday, July 28, an emergency meeting of ambassadors of NATO-member countries to discuss the situation in the region. Previously, Turkey carried out strikes against militants of the Islamic State in Syria and the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in Iraq. Kurds stated about the end of truce with Turkey.

Turkish leaders do not conceal that they fear the creation of a large Kurdish state. After Kurds began to defeat the Islamic State n Syria and Iraq, Turkey sensed a threat of the creation of a Kurdish state, which is supposed to cover also part of modern-day Turkey’s territory. Earlier, Turkish leaders have supported the establishment of a Kurdish state in the territories of Syria and Iraq, but, apparently, now the territorial integrity of Turkey itself is at stake.

Turkey began to deliver strikes at Kurdish forces after talks between the presidents of Turkey and the United States. Experts say that U.S. President Barack Obama gave his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan a “carte blanche” to resolve the Kurdish issue. At the same time, U.S. Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter traveled to Iraqi Kurdistan for talk to its President Masoud Barzani. They are likely to have discussed the organization of Kurdish resistance.

In its turn, the Iranian Foreign Ministry said that Turkey’s attempts to violate the territorial integrity of other countries should be condemned. Thus, almost certainly one can speak about Turkey’s entering a big war in the Middle East, the result of which may be the reshaping of boundaries with the establishment of Kurdistan as a state. Judging from the developments, this process will be led by the United States, which a century ago failed to divide the Middle East according to its own vision.

The new Kurdish state, whose map is going around the Internet, also includes some historical Armenian lands. Armenia officially states that it has no territorial claims to Turkey. However, the Armenian Diaspora has for decades been lobbying for the return to the Ottoman Empire’s partition plan known as Woodrow Wilson’s Arbitrary Act. Under this document, most of the land that may be attached to Kurdistan had been given to Armenia.

Official Yerevan has not responded to the events in neighboring Turkey yet. Diyarbakir (former Tigranakert) is considered to be the unofficial capital of Turkish Kurdistan. It is not far from the border with the Republic of Armenia.