Details from a critical and secretive dialogue between Turkish authorities and the Kurdish leader of Northern Iraq, Mesud Barzani, have emerged. The focus of the talks was the presence of PKK fighters in the Kandil Mountains in Northern Iraq. Carried in part in the the Hurriyet today, a portion of the dialogue as follows:
(Turkish authority) There are around 3,500 PKK militants sheltered in Northern Iraq. They come and go easily, making logistical arrangements with no problem. You could take action against them. But you don't:
(Barzani) Right now it is not possible to do anything. They have large cadres in the mountains. And also, since the war, everything here has changed. Syrian and Iranian Kurds are also here. There is a coming together. Which is why, even if I were to give orders, Kurds will not fire on other Kurds.
(Turkish authority) But if you were to set up a network of pressure on them, the problem would be, from our perspective, solved.
(Barzani) Alright, but why does Turkey not accept me on the level I wish to be accepted at?
(Turkish authority) What kind of level?
(Barzani) In Iraq's new constitution, we achieved the status of federation. Turkey does not want to accept this. It is not behaving like it believes this. It has to accept this reality though.
(Turkish authority) You know that Turkey cannot accept the Northern Iraq aspirations to becoming its own country.
(Barzani) I know. But I am saying with my heart, that though I wish to form a state, I know and respect the realities. And so you, Turkey, have to accept the reality of a federation. Look, after all these years of not accepting the existance of Kurds, what happened? You said there were no Kurds. And now look at the point you are at. And so now if you don't accept us as a federation, the result will be the same.