Turkey shaken by terror attacks
Nine people died in a series of attacks in Turkey on Monday. The government has blamed most of the violence on the banned Kurdish Workers' Party PKK. Chaos in the country is most opportune for President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, some commentators write. Others voice disappointment that terror is all the PKK has to offer.
Erdoğan banking on chaos
President Erdoğan has no problem with Turkey sinking into chaos, the centre-left daily Süddeutsche Zeitung comments: "At the moment it seems as if everyone has their finger on the trigger. It's no coincidence that the country has sunk into violence after Erdoğan's AKP lost its absolute power in the parliamentary elections at the start of June. The president will use any means at his disposal to get that power back, and waging war strikes him as entirely legitimate. His perfidious calculation: a country in chaos will soon want the AKP back. Because despite its democracy deficit, at least there's no violence when it holds the reigns. Erdoğan has just two weeks to form a new government. Failing that there will be new elections - and the terror will continue."
PKK has learned nothing
The renewed PKK terror is a huge disappointment in view of the growing respect for the Kurdish movement around the world, journalist Metin Münir writes in the liberal Internet paper T24: "President Erdoğan has experienced his first electoral defeat and has now directed his anger and hatred at the [pro-Kurdish] HDP. He's put an end to the peace process and sent the air force to Qandil [to attack PKK targets in northern Iraq]. The PKK has several options, but without hesitation it's chosen the stupidest and resumed terrorist activities. For a moment I didn't want to believe it. The PKK's mountain leaders don't seem to have realised that weapons are outmoded, that violence only achieves more violence and that terror only postpones the future it is meant to achieve. They have failed to correctly assess current developments and global public opinion. ... Are they deaf and dumb? My God! Why is no one being more flexible, more subtle, and more clever?"
Parties must go back to the negotiating table
The escalating violence in Turkey can only be solved politically, according to the conservative daily die Presse: "No matter how many bombs are dropped on the PKK, the Turkish government will not solve the Kurdish issue with violence. The only alternative is a return to talks. To keep the political process alive the government would indeed need one key contact person sitting in parliament, namely Selahattin Demirtaş, head of the left-wing pro-Kurdish HDP. But this is where Erdoğan's second - dangerous - power game comes into play, because the success of the HDP put a dent in the absolute majority of Erdoğan's party in the recent elections. If the HDP were prohibited or its leading functionaries put on trial for ties to the PKK, Erdoğan's AKP might get better results in the next election. The Turkish president is playing a risky game, while his country descends into violence."