10:09 GMT +326 May 2019
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    A Syrian Kurdish young woman holds the flag of the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) (File)

    Kurds Not Attending Geneva Talks Amid Turkey's Stance - PYD Party Co-Chair

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    The Syrian Kurds will attend the next round of Geneva talks on Syrian settlement due to Turkey's anti-Kurdish sentiment.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The Syrian Kurds will not be attending the next round of Geneva talks on Syrian settlement due to Turkey's anti-Kurdish sentiment, co-chairman of the Syrian Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) Saleh Muslem told the Firat News Agency, adding that the group was in contact with the talks' UN mediators.

    "We do have a relationship with the people who administer the talks, but there is no advance in our attendance… Even though we are not in Geneva, we are not the loser in this process," Muslem said Sunday, as quoted by the news agency.

    He specified that PYD is in communication with people on UN Special Envoy to Syria Staffan de Mistura’s team.

    Muslem noted that a political solution could not be adopted without the participation of Kurdish representation in the talks. While the Syrian Kurds abstain from negotiations "due to Turkey’s approach," Muslem stressed that they did not consider Ankara as an enemy.

    "The US and Russia know very well that without us, there can be no political solution in Syria. We may not be at the table now due to Turkey’s approach, but the forces that know there won't be a political solution without Kurds want to include us in this process without discarding Turkey," Muslem said.

    The UN-backed intra-Syrian talks between the Syrian government and opposition parties have been held since 2012 in Geneva. The newest round of talks will be held on May 16-19.

    Turkey has rejected the involvement of PYD in the talks, as it considers the group an extension of the nationalist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), a designated terrorist group in Turkey.

    Syria has been engulfed in a civil war since 2011, with government forces fighting against Syrian opposition groups aiming to overthrow President Bashar Assad, and numerous extremist and terrorist groups such as Daesh, which is outlawed in Russia.


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    Syrian settlement, Syrian peace talks, Daesh, UN, Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG), Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), Geneva, Turkey, Syria
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