Syrian regime spokesman calls for coordination with Kurds in war on ISIS

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Talib Ibrahim

ARA News 

QAMISHLI – Since the outbreak of the Syrian crisis in March 2011, dozens of political analysts backed President Bashar al-Assad in his war against opponents. Talib Ibrahim is a main spokesman for the Syrian regime and one of the most popular pro-Assad strategic analysts. 

ARA News interviewed Ibrahim to talk about the recent deadly clashes that erupted between pro-regime forces and the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) in the mainly Kurdish city of Qamishli [Qamishlo], northeastern Syria.

Regarding the Kurdish demand of dissolving the pro-Assad militia of NDF, Ibraim said: “It is not logical to dissolve the National Defense Forces [led by Muhammad Faris, an Arab tribal leader in Qamishli], as demanded by the [Kurdish-led] Auto-Administration delegation at the meeting with the Syrian [regime] delegation in the city of Qamishli.”  

The Democratic Auto-Administration was established in early 2014 under the leadership of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) and allied groups in the al-Jazeera Canton [Hasakah Province], Kobane Canton, and Afrin Canton [Aleppo Province], north and northeastern Syria.

Kurdish officials suggest they will not withdraw from any places captured in the clashes last week with the Syrian regime despite the recently reached ceasefire in Qamishli. During the clashes, the Kurdish forces killed at least 31 regime fighters and captured 102, after losing 13 YPG fighters. 

The Kurds, who have expelled pro-Assad forces from Allaya central prison and other locations in Qamishli, stressed they will not make any concessions to the Syrian government. 

However, the Syrian regime spokesman accused foreign powers of being behind the regime-Kurds clashes.

“There were foreign agendas behind these clashes. This conflict was a surprise, because we know there is continuous coordination between the YPG forces and the Syrian Arab Army. We have proved this in many occasions,” Ibrahim told ARA News. 

“There are some parties that want to take advantage of individual faults committed by either the YPG forces or the [pro-regime] National Defense Forces in a bid to ignite a major conflict in the region.”

Ibrahim accused Turkey and the United States of having agendas in northern Syria, adding those powers have been behind the recent rifts and clashes in Qamishli.  

“These powers seek to involve the Syrian government and the Kurds in a similar conflict that is going on in Turkey’s south-east, despite the different circumstances between the two sides,” he said. “They seek unrest in Qamishli.” 

“Generally, we cannot isolate any internal Syrian event from regional developments. We also see that the recent developments might be just a transient misunderstanding between the Kurds and Syrian Arab Army. I personally believe all what happened in Qamishli was a mere misunderstanding between the two sides,” he said. 

According to Ibrahim, the regime cannot easily dissolve the National Defense in response to conditions proposed by the Kurdish leadership in Qamishli.

“Things are not that easy as it seems, but also let me be more logical in this regard; there are large numbers of people who joined the ranks of the National Defense who have done well in major areas within the country,” the Syrian analyst told ARA News.

“They [National Defense group] have bravely fought Daesh, al-Qaeda-offshoot Nusra Front and other terrorist groups in Syria and they have played a mjor role against terrorism in the country,” he said. “Many martyrs were reported in the NDF’s ranks while defending the Syrian soil.” 

The official also emphasized the role of Kurdish YPG forces in combatting ISIS, calling for more coordination between the Kurds and regime troops in northern Syria. 

“What is logical is that the Kurdish leaders in the region should continue coordination with the Syrian Arab Army and work together in the face of ISIS threats, al-Nusra Front and other terrorist groups in Syria,” he said.

“We are proud that Kurds shared us the land, history and geography and will share us the same destiny,” Ibrahim told ARA News. 

In April 20, clashes erupted between the Kurdish security police of Asayish [backed by YPG] and the Syrian regime forces near the security square in the city of Qamishli, northeastern Syria. At least seven civilians were killed in the Zaytouniya neighborhood after the pro-regime forces hit the city with heavy weapons, and more than 24 other civilians were wounded, according to a medical source who talked to ARA News on condition of anonymity. The three-days clashes stopped after a ceasefire agreement was reached between the Kurdish leadership and the regime forces on Saturday. 

Interview by: Ahmad Shiwesh

Source: ARA News

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2 thoughts on “Syrian regime spokesman calls for coordination with Kurds in war on ISIS”

  1. spanner48 says:

    So: he wants the YPG/YPJ to “coordinate with” and fight alongside the regime. But he’s not offering them anything in terms of federalism or regional autonomy. What does he expect?

  2. spanner48 says:

    See the accompanying quote from Sharif Shihada: “The Syrian government will not allow any autonomous entity on the Syrian land.”

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