“Arabs and Kurds in the Face of Turkish Ambitions”
The Council hosted on August 12, 2020, a closed symposium about the topic of “Arabs and Kurds in the face of Turkish ambitions,” with the participation of: Professor Dr. Rajai Fayed, President of the Egyptian Centre for Kurdish Studies; Ambassador Abdel-Rahman Salah and Ambassador Hazem Khairat, members of the Council; and from the Kurdish side: Mr. Muhammad Arslan Ali, Director of Firat News Agency (ANF) office in Cairo; and Mr. Mala Yassin Rauf, the representative of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) in Cairo. The symposium was moderated by Ambassador Dr. Ezzat Saad, Director of the Council.
The seminar began with Ambassador Dr. Ezzat Saad welcoming the participants. He then noted that the symposium comes in light of the developments taking place in the region, especially the Turkish practices in the MENA region, threatening the national security of many countries, and that cooperation to confront those ambitions is significantly required.
The symposium has addressed the following themes: The Ottoman legacy in Egypt, the illusion of Neo-Ottomanism, the Turkish ambitions in the region, the opportunities for unifying the Kurdish forces and the stances of the actors (Turkey, the United States, Russia), Israel and the Arab- Kurdish rapprochement, and the opportunities for Arab- Kurdish rapprochement to confront the common enemy (commonalities and disparities).
The following has been emphasized during the meeting:
History still needs to be reviewed in order to monitor the crimes and violations committed during the period of the Ottoman Caliphate.
Turkish policies are not expected to be voluntarily changed by the Erdogan regime, but they would be rather changed through imposing a fait accompli by a regional coalition of influential countries agreeing among themselves on the need to confront Turkish policies and ambitions. This must take place before 2023, the year in which Turkey would celebrate the 100th anniversary of establishing the first republic, and in which Erdogan intends to establish the second republic and abandon the Lausanne Agreement, because if this fact is ignored, there might be a major crisis between regional and international powers on the one hand and Turkey on the other.
The Kurdish issue is not an internal one but rather a regional and international issue, particularly as those forces were the ones who caused the division of the Kurdistan region among 4 countries during the twenties of the last century; calling on the Arab countries to move, on top of which is Egypt, and to coordinate with international and regional institutions to achieve Kurdish unity, which would be an important means of confronting the ambitions of a regional power seeking to impose its agenda in the region, and this cooperation shall determine the future relationship between Arabs and Kurds.
The Arab rapprochement with the Kurds raises Israel’s ire, which has tried since its establishment to attract the Kurdistan region towards its side and support it in all forms, and despite the absence of documents indicating the good relationship between Israel and the Kurdish people, this is nothing more than media statements. Moreover, in light of the fact that relations are not built on the basis of emotions, these relations have not yet reached up to the level of being strategic between the two sides. Indeed, Israel violates the rights of approximately 160,000 Jewish Kurds residing inside Israel. Promoting Israel’s support to these factions originates from Israel’s desire to create weak entities and divide the motherland of the Arab countries with the aim of weakening them, and that is why Israeli attempts have always been there to support the Kurdish side, trying to incline the Kurds towards hostility with Iran and create an Israeli ally in this region.