The Kurds in Turkey are main subjects in an ongoing debate on recognition, identity awareness and ethnic mobilization. Dealing with the Europeanization of minority rights, the thesis aims to highlight the EU’s role in contributing to increased recognition of the Kurds as an ethnic group, and what possible effects such a development may have. Particularly the issue of a more prominent identity awareness as a result of the recognition of the Kurds as an ethnic group, is pointed out as one main effect of Europeanization pressure on minority rights in Turkey. By the collection and analysis of semi-structured interviews pursued with young people of Kurdish origin as well as with experts on the topic, the aim has been to investigate the role of the EU – seen through the conditionality principle, conflict resolution and social learning – and what perceived effects a diminishing EU leverage may have on individuals of minority background. The analysis suggests that the EU is indeed seen as an important factor leading to increased recognition and thus identity awareness of the Kurds as a group. Even if the sincerity of EU reforms is questioned, the young Kurds display a belief in the EU and subsequent frustration by the standstill of EU reforms. The perceived role and importance of the EU for the individuals has seemingly shrunk, and the analysis further suggests that the increased recognition and subsequent identity awareness is leading to the interviewees seeing themselves between a rock and a hard place – without the belief of further reforms pushed by neither the Turkish government nor the EU. At the same time, polarization, nationalistic tendencies and politicized identities continue to grow. The conclusion points to the EU’s role in pushing for minority rights reform and conflict resolution, seen as valuable for members of minority groups – however questions the pressure for reforms without lasting enforcement mechanisms. By focusing on the implications of this development for the individual Kurd, the hope is to shed light on the development of increased identity awareness and EU pressure or lack of such. The qualitative case study is unable to isolate the effects of the EU on increased identity awareness, and further research on the topic should be conducted.