QAMISHLO (Kurdistan 24) – The US-backed, Kurdish-led forces in northern Syria say they are ready to hold talks with the Syrian government over the future of the territory under its control.
The Syrian Democratic Council (SDC) which administers Kurdish-controlled areas and is considered the political wing of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), said in an online statement Sunday that they are ready to open a new page of relations with the Syrian government and avoid military options.
“When the Syrian government stated they open the door for negotiations, we did not hesitate to agree to the dialogue without conditions, and we looked positively to the statements that seek an internal Syrian dialogue,” the statement reads.
The statement came after Syrian president Bashar al-Assad said last week in an interview with Russia’s RT international broadcaster that his government had begun “opening doors for negotiations” with the SDF but did not rule out a military response if necessary.
“This is the first option. If not, we’re going to resort to…liberating those areas [in northern Syria] by force,” he said. “The only problem left in Syria is the SDF.”
Elham Ahmad, the SDC’s co-chair, also confirmed that time might be ripe for negotiations with the Syrian government.
She also noted a Damascus-based political group had visited the Syrian Kurdish-led administration to “start a dialogue.”
Additionally, Aldar Khalil, the co-chair of the Movement for a Democratic Society (TEV-DEM), a coalition of mainly Syrian Kurdish parties, said talks with Damascus were meant “to develop a Syrian-Syrian solution and close the door on conflicts and wars.”
He further expressed his party’s readiness to send a delegation to Damascus to see whether the Syrian government is ready to accept an autonomous Kurdish area in the country’s northeast.
TEV-DEM and SDC are the two primary councils that rule Syria’s Kurdish-held areas in the north and are considered the political wings of the main military forces, the YPG and SDF respectively.
Editing by Karzan Sulaivany