[EDITORIALS]Uri hardliners: Stand downTurmoil is gripping the governing Uri Party over the National Security Law. In an attempt to reach an agreement with the Grand National Party, Uri’s leadership has adopted a more flexible stance, but party hardliners have said the National Security Law issue must be addressed this year. Some party members have even threatened to leave the party if “the National Security Law is not abolished within this year.” Hardline Uri lawmakers are on a hunger strike in the Assembly, saying party leadership will be held responsible if demands are not met.
Why are the hardliners being so stubborn?
As we have already said repeatedly, the issues surrounding the National Security Law should be solved in a practical manner instead of sticking to party lines. The fact that the leadership of the governing party and the opposition party have tried to bring the issue of human rights and the security of the peninsula to the fore proves that things can be resolved if both sides talk to each other.
With even the president saying “take things slowly,” it’s hard to understand why rank-and-file hardliners are taking such an inflexible stance.
If the National Security Law issue is not resolved, the outlook for next year’s political landscape is hard to predict. The Grand Nationals are firmly against the abolition of the National Security Law, while the majority of the people are in favor of introducing some changes into the law instead of complete abolishment.
If, despite such circumstances, the governing party elects to push forward as it has the numbers to do so in the National Assembly, there would be no other choice for the opposition party than to take to the streets.
The pledge by the president to focus on the economy and achieve harmony among the people will be hard to accomplish if this worst-case scenario comes to pass.
The governing and opposition parties are getting closer to a consensus. While Uri argues that the National Security Law has been misused by governments for security reasons, the Grand Nationals have come up with an alternative version of the law in which most anti-human rights clauses have been omitted. In context, what both sides want is not so very different.
It’s time for Uri’s hardliners to stop standing in the way of progress. The public wants to greet the New Year knowing there is some hope.