POLITICS > Plans for ‘Alawite state’ caught on Turkey’s radar


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New Syrian refugees arrive at a stopover facility for breaking fast near the Turkish border town of Reyhanlı in Hatay.

New Syrian refugees arrive at a stopover facility for breaking fast near the Turkish border town of Reyhanlı in Hatay.

Turkey has been struggling to cope with the growing number of refugees from Syria, but officials in Ankara are now having to contend with a new concern – reported efforts to make Hatay a part of a planned Alawite state.

Officials are concerned about a possible country, called the Alawite State to some or the “new Hatay” to others, that will be established in the Latakia - Hatay corridor.

To some, Hatay’s major Alawite population, who have close links to the Alawite community in Syria and many relatives in the troubled country, adds to such concerns. But mentioning these links as a major potential risk would definitely be unfair because the Alawites’ responsible attitude and the centuries-old, deep-rooted ties between Alawites and Sunnis will not allow any effort that aims to manipulate the sensitive balance between the two.

Many also believe that the chances of Hatay breaking away from Turkey are near zero, saying: Bashar al-Assad has no space to breathe. How can he have the power to establish such a state and get Mukharabat [the Syrian secret service] members to set the groundwork in Hatay for such an operation?” At the same time, some say the issue has gone beyond al-Assad and the Mukhabarat and that international intelligence operatives are testing the waters in the region to see “if such a state would be a better option.”

Hatay was once an independent state and such provocateurs may be hoping to make use of that history. From Sept. 7, 1938, to June 29, 1939, the Republic of Hatay flew its flag over the territory that is now the Hatay province. Locals in Hatay are said to be complaining about the Syrian refugees in the province, who reportedly harass the Alawite community, while the Turkish state is also aware of the situation. It is not easy to be successful in such a plan, but it is easy to create tension between the Alawites and Sunnis in the city through constant disinformation.

That is why the provocations, which could be more effective than the strongest chemical weapon, should be watched carefully, according to some. Turkey is reportedly more focused on this issue than the possibility of a Kurdish state in northern Syria.


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Ela Meri

9/3/2012 2:53:02 PM

For centuries, Hatay has been the home of Arab-Alawites, Arab- Christians, Greek Ortodox, Turkish Alevis, Kurdish, Armenians and Turkish-Sunnis (who are in minority). This seems to irritate Erdogan. As a Turkish-Sunni-practicing muslim, he takes sides in Syria issue, he disregards of Alevi concerns about the sunni refugees. Hatay is maybe the last remaining ancient land where all faiths live in peace.This is now in Danger, more than any other time in history, thanks to Erdogan. What is his plan?

Basil Keilani

9/1/2012 6:08:51 PM

This article is beyond ridiculous. Turkey is not under any threat from Alawite Turkish citizens. This is strange.

Turk Uzan

8/31/2012 11:15:18 PM

What a joke, why is this even seriously published ... ? Thank you for creating weird conspiracy theories.... Assad in his strongest moment was a joke vs Turkey... and now he is going to set up an Alawite state in a province which is mostly Turkish and the rest a mix of Syriac, Kurd and Arab ... who are you people kidding


8/31/2012 8:36:30 PM

I guess Israel is next then.


8/31/2012 8:08:32 PM

@Rapaport If I understand you right you are ready for the divison of Turkey. One part for the kurds and the other for the alawites.Interesting. @mr who iranians shia are different from the alawite. Same branch but not the same way of worship.

Aryeh Rapaport

8/31/2012 5:11:40 PM

Shah, yes, it can be divided. If citizens are mistreated & want to build a better future for themselves they have a right of self determination, freedom. If citizens are happy there is nothing to worry about! We are all gods children and should be respected, loved, encouraged. If mistreatment's are taking place - why should you expect to continue ruling "the other". You abuse your role and expect obedience? Countries must treat ALL citizens with respect, dignity, equality or suffer consequences!


8/31/2012 3:55:44 PM

Future of Syria looks as bright as Irak.

Recep Ozel

8/31/2012 12:22:51 PM

Our founder and savour Kemal Atatürk defeated the British, French, Greeks, and others to gift us the Republic of Turkey. In the space of 10 years it has been reduced to a pawn in a regional islamic power struggle. How sad.

Shah Hamdan

8/31/2012 12:13:34 PM

As per greater democratic Middle East plan, Iraq and Syria need to be divided to make way for Independent Kurdistan, Sunni Syria, Sunni Iraq, Alawite Syria, Shia Iraq. Its worth as per Western powers If Turkey has to sacrifice some of her areas, Kurds and Alawites in this process. Great games need great sacrifices. PM and FM open your eyes to reality and come out of your strategic depth illusion. Save Turkey from further sliding into this never ending quagmire for future generations.

mr who

8/31/2012 9:43:02 AM

A good suggestion would to contact Persia and offer then a deal where Alawite have a fifty percent power sharing in the new government
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