The conflict within Turkey between those of Kurdish heritage and the rest of the population has been going on for decades. The Rector of Mardin Artuklu University decided it was necessary for his institution to begin an institute on Kurdish studies in order to deal with a gap in the education of his students. The Supreme Board of Education(YOK) denied the application on grounds there were not sufficient Kurdish scholars available to staff it.
At present, there are 30 universities in the world which offer courses and programs in Kurdish studies, including several universities located in Iraq or Kurdistan. The rector knew it would be relatively simple to contact scholars from those institutions in order to staff the proposed Kurdish Institute. This is simply another example of failure on the part of Turkey to initiate programs which demonstrate respect for those of Kurdish background.