The meeting was arranged after Zana recently voiced her belief that Erdoğan can solve the Kurdish issue and that she has never lost hope in him. Her statements elicited some harsh criticism from the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP). The meeting took place at a time when the country is again being shaken by violence. Considering the atmosphere in the country, most people are hopeful that the Erdoğan-Zana meeting can yield fruitful results toward the solution of the Kurdish problem.
Sabah’s Mahmut Övür says the Zana-Erdoğan meeting is promising in that it is a move that will open the way for political actors who are now deadlocked regarding a solution to the Kurdish problem, and it is not just a gesture made for Zana due to her remarks about Erdoğan. “As a Kurdish woman, Zana touched the nerves of the military tutelage regime in the 1990s. Thanks to these efforts, the Kurdish issue began to be debated. Now, she is doing a similar thing and shaking the tutelage over Kurdish politics and opening the way for civilian politics,” says Övür. He says Zana has taken the first step to achieving peace in the Kurdish problem by courageously standing against the prejudices of some Kurdish politicians, and she needs to be given support to this effect.
Milliyet’s Derya Sazak finds it important that a person like Zana, who was forced to leave Parliament in the 1990s, jailed for 10 years and lived in the atmosphere of civil war in the country, explained some realities surrounding the Kurdish problem to Erdoğan. “Since Erdoğan has closed his ears to the voices of opponents for a long time, what Zana told him must have attracted his attention,” says Sazak. “When violence escalates in the Southeast again, Zana wants recognition of the rights of the Kurds and a new beginning for a peaceful solution to the Kurdish problem,” says Sazak, who finds Zana’s move very courageous since she made it despite criticism from the BDP.
According to Radikal’s Oral Çalışlar, it would be wrong to see Zana’s move as an individual one as he thinks ensuing developments will take place, depending on steps that will be mutually taken by the government and the BDP. In his view, this meeting, which took place at a time when violence has again escalated in the country, could initiate meaningful steps to be taken for the solution of the Kurdish problem.