Efforts to recognize AA amid hostile schemes
Badran Çiya Kurd indicated that the Turkish state of occupation does not want the Autonomous Administration to be politically recognized and therefore it is intensify its attacks.
Çiya Kurd pointed out the importance of the meetings they held, and said, "I expect that these developing relations will be a new beginning for the AA from political point of view. Official negotiations will start with the Autonomous Administration."
Regarding Bashar al-Assad's statements, he said that the Damascus government may wish to reconsider some of its policies and open the way for dialogue to reach an agreement.
We asked Çiya Kurd, co-chair of the Executive Council of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria, about the meetings between the Autonomous Administration and the countries of the world, the attacks of the Turkish state, Bashar al-Assad's statements, and the impact of the situation in Afghanistan on Syria.
For a long time and you have been holding many meetings with world countries, at first, can you talk about the outcome of these meetings?
We have held important meetings at the level of foreign ministers, parties and personalities. Our meetings are still going on. Autonomous Administration launches a political campaign. Many European countries enter into relations with the Autonomous Administration without fear. There are many other countries that would like to meet with us. There are also some common issues between us.
There are many common points and much debated about them, for example, our country today is still fighting a serious war against terrorism. All countries consider themselves indebted to the Autonomous Administration, and they tell us, "We owe it to you for offering such a sacred struggle." The countries we met with say, "We will support you and continue our cooperation together."
All of them stress the need to protect the stability of the region. They say they will do what is necessary from the human, economic and political side. They also say that without the Autonomous Administration, a political solution cannot be implemented in Syria. They say that they will also try for the Autonomous Administration to become a party to the political dialogues and to present a solution in this way. These discussions and opinions are very important to us. We expect that in this way this relationship will continue to progress. This will be a new beginning for the political acceptance of the Autonomous Administration. In this way, the official negotiations with the Autonomous Administration will develop.
Negotiations are underway with the de facto Autonomous Administration. Some countries are open, while others are willing to negotiate.
We are aware that they have interests with Turkey, the Damascus government and the various parties. Therefore, they are apprehensive, but they still want to negotiate with the AA.
The AANES recently opened a representative office in Geneva, Switzerland. How do you see the opening of representations in general and in Geneva in particular? Can it be said that it is a step for political recognition of the existing administration in the region?
The opening of a representative in Geneva was a very important step In developing of relations and negotiations. This is a new developing stage. This is the fifth representation to be opened in European countries. The opening of a special representation in Geneva is of great importance as it is seen as the center of politics. The role of the representation is to be able to communicate the problems of the peoples of northern and eastern Syria to the world by all means. On the political side, it will work on recognizing the Autonomous Administration and developing economic, security, stability and humanitarian relations. At the same time, it will work to bring the crimes committed against our people in the occupied areas such as Serêkaniyê, Afrin and Girê Spî to public opinion and to start a political and legal struggle against them.
Reactions appeared against the opening of a representative office in Geneva by the Turkish state and the Damascus government...
Yes, both the Turkish state and the government of Damascus took a violent stand against the opening of the representation in Geneva. This shows that both regimes will never accept that the region becomes democratic and will not accept the recognition of the achievements of the Kurdish people in the world.
Therefore, they face these gains with a racist and chauvinistic mentality.
The Turkish state protested the opening of such a representation in Geneva. The Damascus Foreign Ministry also took the same position, saying, "This office is illegitimate, it is against international law, it represents the people who took up arms against us to divide Syria."
At the outset, we say that this representation is not a substitute for the Syrian embassy and consulate. It represents the peoples of northern and eastern Syria. These representations will convey the pain and problems of the peoples of northern and eastern Syria to the world. Because today, the Damascus government and its embassies abroad are no longer able to represent northern and eastern Syria until they represent all of Syria.
The Damascus government distances itself from the problems of northern and eastern Syria. There are attacks by the Turkish state, water cuts, security issues, terrorism and economic issues, and the Damascus government sees that these issues are outside the scope of its powers and responsibility. So the opening of these representations is very important.
Do you have moves to open representations in other countries?
Other representative offices will be opened in places where it is necessary, we have no plans to open a representative office in every country. The work will be done for the countries that need it. Some of these works are on our agenda.
“Syria will not go back to before 2011. It can be governed by a decentralized administration,” Bashar al-Assad said in recent statements. How do you evaluate this statement by Bashar al-Assad?
We, as an Autonomous Administration, consider the statements of the Syrian President important. We hope that the ideas and assessments that have been made will open a new door and the possibility of dialogue, the results of which will include political alliances that bring all parties together around a Syrian solution. One of the main points in the statement was that Syria will not return to the way it was before 2011. This is our opinion and all of Syrians, and as we always say, Syria will never return to before 2011.
Under the current circumstances and conditions, how can we build a new system among all Syrians where everyone can find their place in it and protect their rights.
Our hope is that the Damascus government will join these meetings again. There must be practical steps in this regard to really believe in it and make this assessment a fresh start.
The other important point was that Syria cannot be managed through a central system, it must be a decentralized system. This is what we have been saying over the years. We stress once again the need to protect the different nationalities, cultures, and beliefs that exist in Syria.
Each person may interpret the decentralized system according to his opinion. But the truth is the diversity of Syrian society. There is a need for a decentralized system in which the rights of all are protected. Not, as was said before, by establishing administrative decentralization only. It is necessary to increase the responsibilities of local administrations. In this way, this will solve all problems.
Before 2011 Law 107 was adopted for local administrations. It is said that this law is an alternative to the decentralized system in Syria. We say that it is not possible for this law to solve the problems in Syria. The political, cultural, economic and security aspects of the decentralized system should be discussed and responsibilities identified. Thus, this will be a lasting solution for the future of a democratic Syria.
As you said, these statements are not new and are also the demands of the Syrian people. But the interesting thing is that this is the first time that Bashar al-Assad has said this...
Economic and living problems are increasing, especially in Daraa, As-Suwayda, Idlib and many other areas of Syria. A wave of emigration has already begun in Syria. The situation in Syria is critical at this stage. Either he will change the policy for Syria, or he will make the situation worse. The army of the Damascus government entered the areas where an agreement was reached with the aim of solving the problems there. Daraa was one of these areas. They believed that they had expelled the armed opposition groups from there. But they find that there are also unresolved issues. The problems worsened over time. The methods and mentalities of the previous Damascus government cannot find a solution to the problems. It is possible that at this point they may wish to reconsider some of their policies and open the way for dialogue in order to reach an agreement. For this, practical steps must be taken. Then everyone will believe that the Damascus government wants to change its policy and mentality. But so far we have not seen any practical steps. We want these statements to be proven with practical steps.
On the one hand, important political and diplomatic developments are taking place in your region, and on the other hand, the attacks of the occupying Turkish state are increasing. The attacks on Şengal, northern and eastern Syria and southern Kurdistan are being carried out simultaneously. What do you say about these attacks?
The Turkish state launches its attacks on the peoples of the region with great brutality and a fascist mentality. Especially in these last days, without distinguishing between the military and civilians, hospitals and military sites, but rather attack randomly on everything that appears in front of it. This indicates that the power of the AKP-MH is in a very critical situation at home and that it is facing many major setbacks and has lost many of its supporters. The Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria continues to make successful steps. Especially on the political level, it is experiencing an important state of openness. The Turkish state strongly opposes this and does not want the Autonomous Administration to enter such a political process. Therefore, in this period, it seeks to send a message that "as long as we exist, you cannot maintain and protect your political position, we will always creat instability, and threat you." They want to send this message to the peoples of the region and the countries that communicate with us. They primarily seek to warn them and say, "This is a war zone and we can attack and eliminate it whenever we want."
They can no longer achieve what they want through ISIS as they did before. There is no stability in Idlib. In fact, the Turkish state's calculations about Idlib were not successful. The violations in Afrin also caused the Turkish state to enter a very difficult and bad situation. There is a lot of political and legal pressure. Their practices have been discussed in some reports by international legal institutions.
Their plans failed
Today, they resort to various schemes through their allies, such as the Syrian National Coalition and the Kurdish National Council. For example, they are trying to return the people of Afrin who were displaced to al-Shahba to relieve the pressure on them. They want to show that there are no problems in Afrin. As if Afrin is safe and everyone can go back to their homes and regions. Ghannouchi in Tunisia is a major ally of the AKP at the moment. He has been overthrown. This was also a blow to them. They launch attacks and operations in legitimate defense zones. But they did not achieve the result. They also sought to ignite an internal war between the Kurdish parties, but to no avail. Therefore, today they attack northern and eastern Syria and Şingal with great hatred. They want revenge for their failure. Through these attacks, the Turkish state wants to create big problems in the region. Everyone should be vigilant about these attacks. In particular, we must realize that the Turkish state does not allow stability in northern and eastern Syria.
Countries with forces in the region are responsible for these attacks
Everyone is responsible for these attacks, and they must take a stand. European countries and member states of the international coalition and NATO, especially the United States and Russia, have responsibilities in this region, and the forces of those countries are here. Although all these forces are here, the Turkish state attacks. They must take a firm stand against these attacks in order to achieve lasting stability, so that terrorism and ISIS do not return to the region again, and so that the Autonomous Administration can develop itself as a democratic experiment to be important part of the solution to the Syrian crisis. We say that AA is the most successful and essential model. It could be a basis for resolving the Syrian crisis. It is everyone's responsibility to confront the attacks launched by the Turkish state.
There is talk around the world of the situation in Afghanistan and the Taliban coming to power after the withdrawal of the United States. How will this situation in Afghanistan affect Syria and the Middle East?
The changes and events taking place in Afghanistan and the withdrawal of US forces are significant events and will affect the entire region. How the United States intervened in Afghanistan in 2001 and how the resistance created a new balance and created a new influence in the region, all of which we believe will lead to new balances. It will have a major impact on Iran, Russia, China, Syria and Iraq.
There are different problems in Iraq and Syria. If the United States remains in the region under the pretext of fighting terrorism, then this situation continues. Therefore, the situation in the region is not similar to the situation in Afghanistan in many ways. But the important thing in Afghanistan today is the Taliban coming to power. This happened within a few days. Turkey in particular will want to take advantage of the Taliban to use them again in the region. Everyone knows that ISIS existed, and in some other countries political Islam was dominant, but they were defeated. The Turkish state is now looking for other places where these groups can seize power, with the aim of relying on them and making them a focus for all the extremist Islamic forces in the world. The Turkish government has sent many messages of support to the Taliban. Everyone knows that in Afghanistan, before the American intervention and even after 2001, extremist Islamic groups settled in many areas under Taliban control. Many people were trained there and went to Syria and Iraq. Now this task will be much easier. It is the Turkish state that opens the way and helps them. The groups that are part of the Syrian opposition under the control of the Turkish state, are very close to the Taliban. They even wanted to entrust some groups of mercenaries with responsibility for the security of Kabul airport.
We know that Turkey will do a lot of joint work between it and the mercenary groups and the Taliban forces. This will become evident in the coming days. It is clear that Afghanistan will become the epicenter of chaos and conflict in the region. If a civil war breaks out in Afghanistan, it is impossible to achieve and maintain stability in Afghanistan, many groups will emerge against the resistance.
A new phase of trouble will begin in the region
The Taliban and Iran are not on the same page. They are historical enemies of Iran. And Iran is afraid of this and could support Shiite groups in Afghanistan. This would pose a threat to Russia and China as well. Therefore, the main party that will support the Taliban is Turkey. This means that a new phase of turmoil will begin in the region. As the peoples of northern and eastern Syria and the Autonomous Administration, we must never rely on foreign forces present within our territories.
The presence of the United States and the international coalition in our region is to fight terrorism. We will continue this struggle. We will try to work with these forces for stability and a political solution. Any country that these external forces enter for its interests and the implementation of their plans, it will not be able to establish a permanent system for the benefit of the people and society in that country. What is important is that the Autonomous Administration in northern and eastern Syria is based on the values of democracy in the region. The Kurds, Arabs, Syriacs and everyone participates in this project.
By relying on these forces, the continuity of this project will be ensured, and not by relying on some external forces. Of course, we will benefit from the cooperation of foreign powers with us against terrorism. But these forces are not fully relied upon. The Autonomous Administration and many other gains existed and proved their existence before the presence of the international coalition forces in the region. From now on, these gains will continue, and we will head towards the final victory through consensus among the peoples of northern and eastern Syria.