Kurdish Leaders : Turkey Will Impede Kurdish Aspirations in post-Assad Syria

7/01/2013 RUDAW –  By ADIB ABDULMAJID – AMSTERDAM, Netherlands – Turkey opposes greater political power for Syrian Kurds and will impede Kurdish aspirations in a democratic Syria that emerges after the fall of President Bashar al-Assad, the head of the Kurdish Progressive Party in Syria (PPKS) said.

“Turkey is quite concerned with the Kurdish situation in post-Assad Syria, and the Turkish government wants to make sure that Syrian Kurds will not benefit from any transitional phase in the country,” Abdulhamid Darwish told Alkurdiya News on Monday.

He said that Ankara would use “its influence on the opposition in general and on its ally, the Muslim Brotherhood, in particular” to clamp down on Kurdish aspirations.

According to Darwish, Syria’s new opposition coalition was founded under European and American sponsorship in order to guarantee the future of Syrian minorities.

“However, the coalition cannot get rid of the influence of some regional powers, especially Turkey, which is obsessed with a chauvinistic mentality and works hard to impede any possible liberty for the persecuted minorities in Syria, especially the Kurds,” he said.

Darwish added that Syria’s new opposition coalition is a modified body of the Syrian National Council (SNC), adding that the position of the Kurdish Supreme Committee (KSC) in Syria inside the coalition will be similar to the Kurdish National Council’s attitude toward the SNC. Darwish argued that the opposition coalition cannot be regarded as a ruling party, so the Kurds do not count on it to achieve Kurdish rights. “The only thing we expect from the coalition is to explicitly recognize our demands as ‘legitimate,” and declare a clear position on the Kurdish issue in Syria,” he said.

Many Kurdish activists blame Kurdish political forces for failing to take the lead in the Syrian civil war.

Siyamend Ahmad, a Kurdish activist in the city of Qamishli, told Rudaw that the KSC wants to blame its inability to respond to the needs of the Kurdish people to a potential intervention of countries like Turkey in the situation in Syria. Unfortunately, some Kurdish political parties claim that Turkey prevents them from taking any steps forward to achieve what they actually couldn’t achieve,” Ahmad argued.

He added that Turkey is absolutely supporting the Muslim Brotherhood in Syria for some agenda, “but that doesn’t mean to claim that Turkey is behind the suffering of our people in the entire Kurdish region in Syria.”

Ciwan Issa, member of the Union of Kurdish Coordination Committees, said that different Kurdish forces should unify in order to gain a greater voice inside the opposition coalition. “Only then will we stop blaming outside forces like Turkey, and face challenges without fear.”