16:01 GMT +314 October 2019
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    Members of the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) monitor the positions of Islamic State (IS) group in the Syrian town of Ras al-Ain, close to the Turkish border on March 13, 2015

    Syrian Kurds 'Swallowed Washington's Bait' but They Are Just a Pawn in US Hands

    © AFP 2019 / DELIL SOULEIMAN
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    The Syrian Kurds might hope that Washington can help them secure greater autonomy, If not independence, but they are merely an instrument that the United States is using to achieve its own objectives in the region, Russian analyst and former diplomat Vyacheslav Matuzov told Izvestiya.

    "Sadly, the Kurds swallowed Washington's bait," he told the Russian daily. "The United States will never alienate Turkey and help Kurdish forces create their own state. The Kurds understandably want to unite their people and they have apparently hoped that the US will help them achieve this goal, but they essentially have become a means in Washington's hands."

    The analyst said that the US wants to overthrow the Syrian government, a move which would destabilize the country and the entire region.

    Farkhat Patiev, who chairs the Council of the Federal National-Cultural Kurdish Autonomy, reaffirmed that the Syrian Kurds have received assistance from the US, but added that some of Washington's activities appear to indicate that they might not support the Kurds if they try to establish autonomy.

    "The United States has been providing assistance to us, but they clearly have their own strategy. On the one hand, they have said that they support the Kurds in their fight against Daesh. On the other hand, they have turned a blind eye to Turkey's intervention in Jarablus," he told the newspaper. "Time will tell what goal the US is pursuing."

    The People's Protection Units (YPG) and the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have been among the Pentagon's key allies in Syria. Kurdish militias have been instrumental in liberating strategically important locations, including the towns of Manbij and al-Shaddadi, as well as the Tishrin Dam. US military officials initially wanted the Kurds to push Daesh out of Raqqa, the group's de facto capital, and northern Syria since the militants used the porous border with Turkey to rearm and resupply.

    Ankara was not happy with these developments since it believes that the Syrian Kurds are affiliated with the Turkey-based Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK). Turkish authorities, who have been involved in a decades-long standoff with the PKK, maintain that if Syrian Kurds achieve greater autonomy, this could further contribute to unrest at home.

    As a result, Turkey launched a belated military offensive, formally known as Operation Euphrates Shield, aimed at removing Daesh and the Kurds from northern Syria. The United States have reluctantly provided support to its NATO ally.

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    Tags:
    Syrian Kurds, military operation in Syria, autonomy, Kurds, assistance, Operation Euphrates Shield, Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), Turkey, Syria, United States
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