Conference: The Future of the Kurds in the Middle East – November 24, 2014.

13 11 2014

logo-white-true-e1411679876274The threat of ISIS and the Kobane crisis have led to interesting developments in the  region. The Turkish government declared that it gives Peshmerga forces a passage to Kobane as a response to Washington’s approval of arms transfers to PYD. For the first time, the White House publicly stated that PYD is different from PKK, and thus, not considered as a terrorist group by the United States. Recently, PYD and Syrian Kurdish parties reached a settlement in Dohuk in the presence of KRG President Massoud Barzani, reminiscent of the Erbil agreement two years ago.

Will the United States support an autonomous Kurdish region in Syria? Is the Dohuk agreement going to be effective under the pressure of ISIS threat? What is the stance of Turkish government toward PYD’s future?

Join us at Rethink Institute for a conversation on the future of Kurds in the Middle East with renowned experts Michael M. Gunter (Tennessee Technological University), Vera Eccarius-Kelly (Siena College), and Sezin Oney (Taraf daily).


MICHAEL M. GUNTER is  professor of political science at Tennessee Technological University where he teaches courses on international relations and American foreign policy. He is the author of 11 books on Kurds in the Middle East, most recently Out of Nowhere: The Kurds of Syria in Peace and War (London: Hurst Publications, 2014).

VERA ECCARIUS-KELLY is Professor of Comparative Politics and Associate Dean at Siena College in Albany, New York. She is the author of The Militant Kurds: A Dual Strategy for Freedom(Santa Barbara, CA: Praeger International).

SEZIN ONEY is columnist for Taraf daily in Turkey. She conducts a weekly news analysis program at Açık Radyo (Open Radio), offering a comparative angle analyzing Turkey’s politics with European politics, and global affairs.


MUSTAFA GURBUZ is fellow at Rethink Institute and a policy fellow at Center for Global Policy at George Mason University. He is the author of Transforming Ethnic Conflict: Rival Kurdish Movements in Turkey (Forthcoming, Amsterdam University Press).

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