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Rudaw

Syria

Syrian army turns attention to Kurdish neighborhoods of Aleppo

By Rudaw 27/12/2016
After defeating Syrian rebels in the city, the Syrian army is now trying to expand its control to the Kurdish areas in Aleppo. Photo:SANA
After defeating Syrian rebels in the city, the Syrian army is now trying to expand its control to the Kurdish areas in Aleppo. Photo:SANA
ERBIL, Kurdistan Region—With the tide of Syria's war turning in the government's favor, the army now seems to turn its attention towards next target, the Kurdish enclave, after regime forces recaptured the country's second largest city Aleppo earlier this month.
 
Syrian military authorities have told the Kurdish forces affiliated with the Democratic Union Party (PYD) to pull their People's Protection Units (YPG) from eastern outskirts of Aleppo or integrate them into the army and "restore the institutions of the state", according to a high ranking general in the Syrian military.
 
"The government had entrusted the PYD with these areas and now the government wants them back. Their (PYD's) work in confronting the terrorists has been completed," General Haitham Hassoun of the Syrian army told Rudaw without specifying when the regime takeover is likely to take place.
 
The PYD, which is the main political group in Syria’s Kurdistan and rules over an area also known as Rojava, declared on March 16 that the region was a federal entity within Syria.
 
The federal region encompasses the three main cities of Afrin, Kobani and Jazira which previously were run as de facto autonomous cantons.
 
The PYD has called the new region the Federation of Northern Syria-Rojava and says its government and society will remain polyethnic.
 
The army withdrew from these regions in northeastern parts of the country in mid-2011 as the Syrian uprising was in its initial months. Though no written agreements were ever published, yet many believed at the time that the army left Kurdish areas in close coordination with the PYD.
 
There are no accurate data about the number of different ethnic groups living in Rojava since many of the Kurdish families in the area were stripped of their citizenship in the 1962 controversial census and were regarded as ajanib or foreigners.     
 
In April 2011, in the heat of the Civil War, the government announced it had granted the ajanib full Syrian citizenship. 
 
The complicated relations between the PYD and Damascus were stable despite profound challenges over the years, but as the US army provided the Kurdish YPG fighters with equipment and aerial support in the aftermath of the battle for Kobani, the Syrian government became increasingly weary of the new alliance between the US and the Kurds.
 
"Ever since the PYD became a US servant and is being used to protect American interests, the government realized the unfaithfulness of the PYD which tries to undermine the government and increase its dominance at our cost," General Hassoun said. 
 
"In the end the PYD must come back under government since they are there as a result of deal," the general said.
 
Spokesperson of Turkey's pro-Kurdish People's Democratic Party (HDP) Ayaan Bilgen told Rudaw last week that the move to expel Kurdish forces from east of Aleppo was expected after Syrian and Turkish representatives had "shown interest" in meeting and mending relations between the two countries.

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i hate turkey | 27/12/2016
time for the USA to bomb the Syrian army. USA better not turn there back on the Kurds.
ditre | 27/12/2016
Assad should think twice because this might very well be the wire trip the American coaltion has laid for him. And even if it's not only Turkey and the jihadists benefits from a clash between the Kurds and the regime. It will be extremely foolish to beleive Erdogan will honor any deals, all the harsh rethoric coming out of Ankara about how they'll never allow a Kurdish state bla bla bla is all to divert attention away, Erdogan is planning to annex big chunks of Syria, wait and see.
kurd | 27/12/2016
so it is proven that PYD was working for Assad regime not kurdish interests. what a shame. PKK and its affiliates are traitors . they do not fight for kurds. they fight for their masters , assad , abadi and ayatolahs
Free Kurdistan | 27/12/2016
there is no diffrence between shia and sunni when it comes to hate against kurds, ezidi, jews, atheist, west, us and eu. Do not be foolish to belive this. support the kurds who love freedom and west/israel.
Mohamedzzz | 27/12/2016
I have often repeated: Kurds are wasting precious time, once the situation settles, they are going to get the short side of the stick, and now we are there, Turkey and Syria are going to join forces against the Kurds.

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