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Syria

Syrian Kurds will accept safe zone if run by UN or coalition: official

By Rudaw 15/1/2019
Aldar Khalil, senior official in TEV-DEM, northern Syria. File photo: Rudaw
Aldar Khalil, senior official in TEV-DEM, northern Syria. File photo: Rudaw
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region – The Kurdish administration in northern Syria will not accept a Turkish role in a safe zone over their areas, but would be open to such a scheme being controlled by an uninterested country or organization, said an official. 

"We can accept a safe zone in the following form – if it is a safe zone under the administration of the United Nations, the Coalition, and uninterested countries," said Aldar Khalil, head of the foreign relations department of the ruling TEV-DEM coalition in Rojava, in an interview with Hawar News published on Tuesday. 

They will not accept Turkey as a guarantor because that is the country making the threats, he added. 

US President Donald Trump and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan have both floated the idea of a safe zone in northern Syria as a solution to prevent a Turkish military offensive against Kurdish forces in the area. Ankara alleges that the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) are a terror organization and a threat to Turkey. The YPG denies the charge and says Turkey is the aggressor. 

Trump and Erdogan discussed the proposal in a phone call on Monday, after Trump tweeted about it. 

Khalil said they are still trying to figure out what exactly Trump and Erdogan envision for this safe zone. 

"If it refers to a zone providing safety from Turkish threats, then we say okay as something right is being done," Khalil told Hawar News.

Turkey wants a safe zone going 32 kilometres (20 miles) into northern Syria and running the length of the border. 

Khalil said that if the proposed zone targets or pushes the YPG and its sister force the YPJ, “protectors of the region,” then they would reject it. 

The Americans haven't made things clear, he said.

"If the Americans say it is true, that it is a safe zone under Turkish control, then we will undoubtedly not accept that," Khalil vowed. 

Trump regularly makes policy announcements on Twitter that leave even his closest advisors stumped

Turkey wants to be in control of the safe zone as part of its “fight against terrorism and terror groups,” Erdogan’s aide Ibrahim Kalin said on Tuesday. 

Comments

 
pre-Boomer Marine brat | 15/1/2019
"Trump regularly makes policy announcements on Twitter.." ... One generally has to wait 2 or 3 centuries for a nation's published histories to rise above partisanship and ideology. Once that happens for the United States', Trump will be widely and loudly criticized for that, especially on issues of foreign policy. And in my humble opinion, his time of serious tribulation in that arena is yet to come.
Hejar | 15/1/2019
Very smart response!
VICTOR | 16/1/2019
To suggest on all social media networks, that if the UN AND AMERICA DECIDED TO PUT THE SAME NO FLY ZONE IN NORTHERN SYRIA AS PART OF THIS SAFE ZONE, AGAINST TURKISH AGGRESION ,LIKE THEY DID IN NORTHERN IRAQ AGAINST SADDAMS AGGRESSION AGAINST THE KURDS OF NORTHERN SYRIA ,THEN THIS COULD BRING LONG TERM SECURITY TO THE KURDS OF NORTHERN SYRIA AGAINST TURKSIH AGGRESSION ,WHILE THE KURDS AND THE SYRIAN GOVERNMENT BEGIN MORE AGGRESSIVE UNIFICATION NEGOTIATIONS GOING FORWARD ,TO BEGIN UNIFYING SYRIA WITH CONSTITUTIONAL PROTECTIONS FOR ALL ITS CITEZENS . THESE PROTECTIONS WILL MAKE IT LESS LIKELY FOR THE KURDS IN NORTHERN STRIA TO END UP IN MASS ARRESTS ,LIKE WAHT HAS TAKEN PLACE AND IS STILL TAKING PLACE INSIDE A TURKEY TODAY .

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