PYD vision on the situation in Syria

01.11.2012 – Co-President of the Democratic Union Party – Saleh Muslim – It is accepted that Syrian revolution has started in 2011, but  we the Kurdish people believe that our revolution has already started on 12th of March 2004 when Qamishlo uprising has united Kurdish people in Western Kurdistan against the Bathiest repressive regime.

The resistance of Kurdish people never stopped since that date through original resists in Syrian intelligence cellars and prisons, ‘’ Nazli Kajal’’ was arrested in April 2004 and we still don’t know anything about her , comrade ‘’Ahmad Husain Husain’’ ( Abu Jodi) has become a martyr in military intelligence cellars ,comrade ‘’Shilan Kobani’’ and more four comrades became martyrs by the Syrian intelligence hands, and also the former MP, comrade ‘’Osman Suliman’’ and all Nawroz festival events like resists and arrests as in Nawroz-2008 and Raqa city Nawroz – 2010, where thousands of Kurdish nationalists exposed to arrest and torture, for instance, in March 2011 (when Syrian revolution was initiated), 1500 detainees from our supporters in Syrian intelligence prisons and dungeons.

Due to these, when Syrian people revolution started for the freedom, democracy and dignity, we as Kurdish people were the most in need people to that, so we were the earliest joiners beside our brothers in the Syrian homeland. When we have analysed the situations, we have concluded a common conviction with our Kurdish brothers and Arabic democratic organisations that have been resisting this regime for long time back. This conclusion was that the Syrian revolution should remain peaceful and we will take our rights by democratic means with preservation of public self-defence up to we reach into comprehensive civil disobedience, and we have to avoid the revolution arming whatever the circumstances are; because we know very well how brutal is the regime, and how stronghold is the regime with the authority. We have concluded above visions into work frame via joining ‘’ The Syrian National Coordinating Body for Democratic Change Forces’’ and we still are an active member party and adhered to its principle and strategies.

Depending on the aforementioned facts, we have to organize our people and prepare for the future on one hand, and to continue in participating in the revolution on the other hand. So we started to organize the Kurdish masses in our project which we believe is the best suited project to solve the Kurdish issue in western Kurdistan and Syria, we called it: “Democratic Self-governing”, which was adopted in our third conference in 2007, and we continued moving our people masses toward the revolution as well. However, our Arab partners were not able to organize the masses in the right way and couldn’t control the Arab street, and by the efforts which made by the existing regime, and foreign interventions, the Syrian revolution were taken out of its peaceful route and got armed, and the result is: what we see today of killing hundreds of people a day in the cycle of mutual violence between regime forces and armed groups that supported from outside parties who are seeking to serve their own interests and objectives, without any regard for the fate of the Syrian people.

We, as a Kurdish forces, could organize the ranks of our people including all other Syrian components stationed in the Kurdish areas such as Arabs, Syriacs, Assyrians and Armenians, under the same roof of the Democratic Society Movement ” (TEVGERA CIVAKA DEMOQRATIK), which includes many civil society organizations as ” Star Union”  for women and “Youth Union” , ” Families of the martyrs Foundation ” and professionals associations as a doctors, engineers, craftsmen and others, in addition to that, formation of local and regional councils and communes in the villages and countryside. Along with “Civil Protection Committees,” which were distributed in almost region of western Kurdistan, in case of any security gap occurs in the Kurdish areas because of armed clashes that take place in Syria nearby the Kurdish areas.

As a result of these measures from our part ,we have achieved a safe Kurdish areas without armed clashes, as in many other Syrian areas which caused a flood of  displaced Syrians , approximately half a million  from displaced Kurds and Arabs came to the Kurdish areas escaping from the hell of clashes taking place between regime’s army and the armed groups fighting under the name of “Free Syrian Army”. For this, we started facing difficulties in meeting living requirements as food and medicine in the Kurdish areas, on one hand the transportation difficulty with other parts of Syria, and on other hand closing the border with Turkey and Kurdistan (North Iraq) region depending on the political mood.

As for the Free Army, we are dealing / coordinating with the groups that broke away from the Syrian Army in order to protect civilians, and we understand each other. But there are other groups that are related to foreign parties and are working to achieve their agendas. Some of these groups that are related to Turkey work on tensing Kurdish Areas as they don’t recognize any of the democratic rights of Kurdish people in Western Kurdistan. Due to the existing of Kurdish phobia by Turkish regime and during the period of good relationship between  Syrian regime and Turkish regime, the Turkish regime were able to recruit many of Turkman people and weak people in its favor and is using them now. Those people are disrupting the atmosphere in Kurdish Areas in addition to the forces of chauvinism regime that does not accept any of Kurds rights. On the other hand, the Free Army is not homogeneous unified organization, but consists of several heads/bodies and has no unified leadership. Some of them are linked to Saudi Arabia, other to Qatar and other to Al-Qaeda. But most of those groups are fundamentalist religious and are not represented by the Syrian National Council.  This means that they don’t have an unified political representation which does not allow us to dialogue with them. Although the western powers worked hard to find a political representative for those groups which embodied in the Syrian National Council but they haven’t succeed so far.

According to Kurdish forces and people organization, we as a Democratic Union Party could organize the ranks of our people in the Democratic Society Movement (TEV-DEM) as mentioned above as well. Through semi-democratic Election, we elect people councils for Western Kurdistan which is represented by the court of the council and a co-presidency of a man and a woman. We as a political party are representing this configuration and council. In addition we commit ourselves to the decisions of the People’s Council. On the other hand, the Syrian Kurdish Parties met each other which are sixteen parties in the Syrian Kurdish National Council.

Recently and over long lasted deliberations and dialogues between the Parliament of Western Kurdistan and the Syrian Kurdish National Council, we could establish a Supreme Kurdish Council representing the overall Kurdish Forces operating in Western Kurdistan and Syria, in the Erbil Convention, which was signed on 11 July 2012. All units, institutions and protection units which were formed formerly are now related to the Supreme Kurdish Council as a result of this convention. The Supreme Kurdish Council consists of ten members from the above mentioned councils and has formed all sub-committees, local councils and protections units in almost Kurdish areas and towns, and also there is People Protection Units which came also under the command of the Supreme Kurdish Council.

One of our advantages which derived from the Kurdish community, there are no religious extremist organizations in our society. Kurdish community itself includes Yazidis and Alevis as well as Muslims. Moreover, in our Community we live with Assyrian, Chaldeans and Armenians for thousands of years. In addition to other social aspects, for example women’s participation in all activities including protection units by 40 percent. And the presidential system of PYD and Parliament of Western Kurdistan is co-presidency of a man and woman. In short, the Kurdish community of Western Kurdistan could be a model for the whole Syrian society in terms of democracy, institutions, participatory and co-existence of all the components.

We as PYD and Parliament of Western Kurdistan had our project, which we called ‘’ Democratic Self-governing’’ and was decided in our third conference of the party in 2007. This project were also been adopted by the Parliament of Western Kurdistan when it was established. This project was a little creative and had no text in the existing forms, as well as at rapprochement with the Kurdish parties that had different projects, ranging from the cultural rights and federal of the Kurdish People.  So we found that the label is not as important as the content, therefore we decided that the following points should be included for solving the Kurdish Issue:

• Constitutional recognition of Kurdish people existence within the unity of the Syrian country, in a secular pluralistic and democratic system.

• Providing the necessary constitutional guarantees of Kurds democratic rights, which include cultural, social, political, economic aspects and Self-protection.

We also believe that Democracy is not achievable without solving the Kurdish issue in Syria; the Kurdish movement in Syria is not separatism and doesn’t look forward to division or fragmentation of Syria as it doesn’t form any danger to any of the neighboring countries at all.

Reasons of Kurdish areas survival and sustained safe and quiet so far relay on the following points / factors:

• Our ability to organize the ranks of our people and there are parties who represent Kurds and is getting support and respect from the majority of the Kurdish People.

• As we mentioned before, no extremist currents in our community.

• The Syrian regime is aware that the countries which support armed groups currently will not support Kurds and their rights especially Turkey.

• The Syrian regime doesn’t assume an open fighting against Kurds because they were experienced in Qamishlo uprising in 2004.

• Adding to all of that, Kurds are demanding their right to exist and their democratic rights which should be protected regardless whoever runs the country.