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    Turkish army tanks make their way towards the Syrian border town of Jarabulus, Syria August 24, 2016

    Turkey Targets Kurds More Than It Does Daesh in Syria - Kurdish Politician

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    In an interview with Sputnik Turkey, Ahmed Şeho, the co-chairman of the Movement for a Democratic Society of Kobani (TEVDEM), spoke about the situation in Kurdish-populated Rojava, the proposed federative makeup of northern Syria, the operation in Raqqa and TEVDEM’s diplomatic ties with the international community.

    “Ever since the start of the 2011 crisis in Syria, the Kurds have been trying to secure their rights as an important element of Syrian society. However, Turkey and its allies have been making every effort to prevent this from happening with all kinds of provocations and armed attacks. Just as the Kurds in Kobani fought to beat back the terrorists’ attacks, Turkey helped train the jihadists in an attempt to crush the Kurdish resistance in Rojava,” Ahmed Şeho told Sputnik Turkey.

    He added that after the city was freed from terrorists and many Kurds had returned there, Turkey and its allies went on to besiege the Afrin Canton and parts of the Jazira Canton.

    When asked about the military situation in Rojava and regions under Kurdish control, he said that they were now working on a project to establish a federation of Northern Syria and Rojava.

    “Our forces now control some 50 square kilometers of territory between al-Hasakah and northern Raqqa. Simultaneously, they are advancing from Manbij towards al-Bab. The Turks tried to check our advance by launching Operation Euphrates Shield. The Kurdish forces also control parts of Afrin and Sahba.”

    “We want all people living in this territory, regardless of their  differences, to have a chance to decide their future as part of a federation and to keep living together just like they did for thousands of years, and enjoy equal rights,” Ahmed Şeho emphasized, adding that Kurdish children, just like everybody else, should be able to study in their mother tongue and feel free to speak it.

    “We want a federative system that would guarantee these rights. The system we propose is a means of checking and balancing the system of a single state and a single flag,” he said, adding that this project enjoyed the support of both Russia and the United States and that many European countries also believe this federative project could help end the war in Rojava and elsewhere in Syria,” he continued.

    Speaking about the operation now being prepared to retake Raqqa from jihadists, Ahmed Şeho said that preparations were now complete and that the Syrian Democratic Forces had been supplied with advanced weapons to join the operation.

    “We don’t think Turkey should be allowed to take part in this operation on its conditions because it is up to the Syrian Democratic Forces to win this war. However, even if the Turks want to fight together with the SDF, there is still a chance they might want to stab us in the back, so neither side is willing to fight as part of a joint operation,” he noted.

    Ahmed Şeho emphasized that Turkey doesn’t really want to fight Daesh as the two had been in close contact with each other and never attack each other.

    “By joining the operation to liberate Raqqa Turkey wants to resume its attacks on the Kurds, not Daesh and its sustained strikes on Afrin only prove that what Ankara really wants is to dash the Kurds’ hopes, rather than destroy Daesh,” Ahmed Şeho said in conclusion.

    The operation to free Raqqa, the Syrian city that has been Daesh's de facto capital since January 2014, is largely viewed as key to defeating the terrorist group, which still controls large areas in Syria and neighboring Iraq.

    Related:

    Turkey Not to Carry Out Raqqa Campaign 'Independently'
    YPG's Involvement in Raqqa Offensive to Exacerbate Tensions Between US, Turkey
    Tags:
    sustained strikes, different agendas, Kurdish federation, terrorists, Kurds, Daesh, Syrian Democratic Forces, Turkish Armed Forces, Ahmed Şeho, Syria
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