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Syrian minister: we are ready to negotiate with Kurds

By Rudaw 13/3/2015
Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi.
Syrian Information Minister Omran al-Zoubi.

QAMISHLO, Syria – War-torn Syria’s information minister said that the government is ready to negotiate with the country’s Kurds, who have declared autonomy in the north, referring to them as a “major partner” in the fight against Islamic State (ISIS).

“Kurds are part of the Syrian nation. We are ready to negotiate with the Kurds as a part of the local administrative body inside Syria’s borders,” minister Omran al- Zoubi said in an interview broadcast Friday by state television.

“Kurds are a major partner in the fight against ISIS, a threat we are facing together,” he added. “We are ready to negotiate with Kurds under the Syrian national law and regulations.”

The minister’s comments coincided with municipal elections by the autonomous government in Syria’s Kurdish regions, or Rojava, on Friday. Voters in the three cantons of Cizire, Afrin and Kobane are voting for representatives for local governments.

According to reports from the Rojava Independent High Electoral Commission, some Syrian media outlets have published misleading times and locations for the elections, with the aim of dampening voter turnout.

Meanwhile, the election was delayed by officials in the northern town of Tal Tamar in Cizire, due to attacks by ISIS that intensified Thursday.

The Kurdish YPG militia, backed by US-led air strikes, has made significant gains in recent weeks against ISIS in northeast Syria, cutting an important supply route from territory controlled by the sectarian Sunni Muslim militant group in Iraq.

The YPG has emerged as a key partner for the US-led alliance fighting ISIS on the ground in Syria. Backed by Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga fighters and air strikes, the YPG defeated ISIS in the border town of Kobane in January.

The YPG’s umbrella organization, the PYD, declared unilateral autonomy in Rojava in late 2013.

Syria’s increasingly complex civil war, which has claimed more than 210,000 lives – more than half of them civilian – is going into its fifth year.


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Let's Coordinate For Mutual Success | 13/3/2015
Let's negotiate as equal partners within a frame of mutual respect and interests.This a brutal war which is staged by powerful external actors.Let's save what is still savable.Let's stick to human values and not to any outdated chauvinist agenda whatsoever.Both the Alawite and the Kurdish peoples must join efforts to survive this atrocious war.As Kurds,we are ready to forgive old grievances and build some understanding with whomever.Tactically there is only that small Edleb province separating us from the Alawite region.With a coordinated pliers- like attacks we could easily dislodge the al-Nusra forces from Edleb ,and we can can thus open a corridor from Khaneqin in the KRG till the Mediterranean coast.This would cut the Turkish supplies routes to the Islamist state.If coordinated,we can both succede.It is true that you are Arabic speaking people ,but we do not care about that provided that you respect likewise our Kurdish language and national rights.Don't forget that your people was living in that coastal region with its own civilization long before the arrival of the Arabs from the Arabic peninsula.We should discuss perhaps a federative status similar to that of the KRG.
Kandil | 13/3/2015
Kurds should try to find a way for understanding with Syria, Turkey can't be trusted, ISIS is the baby of Turkey and will not abandon.
Muraz Adzhoev | 13/3/2015
This seems to be well coordinated Tehran-Damascus-Baghdad provocative political and diplomatic attempt to prevent threatening opportunities and possibilities leading to establishment of Southern-Western Kurdistan. Iran's regime is ready to use its direct and overwhelming influence in Baghdad and Damascus and among some well known Kurdish political forces in Iraq, Syria and Turkey to stop by any means creation of independent democratic Southern or United Southern-Western Kurdistan. Let's see what parties are really patriotic political forces of the Kurdish people. The multinational and multicultural people of Souther Kurdistan and Western Kurdistan should unite and decisively urge the legitimate authorities of the Kurdistan autonomous region to implement its historically sovereign right to independence and reintegration in close cooperation with all local patriotic organizations and forces. Keep non-patriotic forces out and away from the united national liberation movement.
M Gonzales
M Gonzales | 13/3/2015
Oh a smart move if Assad grants the Kurds in Rojava autonomy in return for staying neutral and continuing the fight against ISIS.
Kazin | 13/3/2015
Worth mentioning that a United States spokeperson / representative yesterday said that the US won't support a Kurdish state in Northern Syria (Rojava / West-Kurdistan). If Assad is smart, they close a deal with the Kurdish forces. The creation of an autonomous Kurdish region in Syria, with the blessing of the Ba'ath regime, will not only sabotage the plans of the United States and the Islamofascist Turkish regime, but it will also add legitimacy to the Kurdish state, since it was granted by the official Syrian body (Syrian government), and not ''claimed'' by a separatist movement. It would be a democratic process, and Syria, Iran and the KRG (South-Kurdistan) would back it, hampering any/all attempts by the Islamofascist Turks to sabotage the creation of the autonomous Kurdish region. We'll just have to wait and see what happens! :)

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