Kurdish roadmap to Damascus proposes continued autonomy, SDF to become border guards

It remains unclear if the Syrian Kurdish roadmap presented to Damascus is the same one offered to Moscow or if Damascus will accept the demands.

ERBIL (Kurdistan 24) – A roadmap the Kurdish-backed Democratic Autonomous Administration (DAA) for northeast Syria is expected to present to Damascus was released on Saturday.

According to the roadmap, which the Hawar News Agency (ANHA) published, the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) will become part of the Syrian army and will protect the country’s border, and the DAA will remain autonomous. It also proposes that Syria become a democratic republic.

According to ANHA, the ten points are focused on the unity of Syrian land, the creation of a democratic republic – with the DAA being part of this system – having DAA representatives in the Syrian Parliament, a special flag for the DAA, and the SDF becoming a part of the Syrian army to protect the Syrian border.

Moreover, diplomacy in the DAA areas does not go against the interests of the Syrian people or constitution. As such, the Internal Security Forces in the DAA areas will operate “according to the local councils in a manner that does not contradict with the Syrian constitution.”

While Arabic remains the official language throughout Syria, “learning in the mother tongue is the basis of education in the areas of Autonomous Administration,” which would pave the way for continued Kurdish language education.

“In Autonomous Administration areas, education in local languages is taught in faculties of history, culture, languages, literature and the like,” the roadmap states.

Moreover, the last point of the roadmap suggests that Syrian wealth should be distributed “to the Syrian regions in a fair manner.”

Following US President Donald Trump’s surprise announcement in December that he would withdraw American troops from Syria, the Syrian Kurds began to talk to Moscow and Damascus to prevent a Turkish invasion.

“We have presented a roadmap to the Russians, saying what our goals and principles are, and how the North and East Syrian administration could participate in the constitution,” Dr. Abdulkarim Omar, co-chair of the Foreign Relations Commission of the DAA, told Kurdistan 24.

It remains unclear if the roadmap presented to Damascus is the same one offered to Moscow. Moreover, it is unclear if Damascus will accept the demands.

Assistant Syrian Foreign Minister Ayman Sousan told a small group of journalists in Damascus last week that the Kurdish statements so far are positive “regarding the unity of Syria,” Reuters reported.

“We are confident that through dialogue we can deal with some of the demands,” he added.

On Jan. 13, Trump tweeted that a 20-mile “safe zone” would be created in northeastern Syria. A day later, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan asserted Turkey would set up a security zone in northeast Syria in coordination with the US.

Salih Muslim, the former co-chairman of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), told Kurdistan 24 that Syrian Kurds “need a safe area, but without Turkish fingers” involved.

Russia has also rejected such Turkish plans.

In his annual press conference on Wednesday, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Russian President Vladimir Putin would tell Erdogan, who is expected to visit Moscow soon, that all of Syria should be under the control of Damascus.

Moreover, he welcomed talks between Damascus and the Kurds.

The proposed roadmap might indicate that the Kurds will work more closely with Damascus and Moscow to stop a Turkish safe zone, but it is unclear if Washington would allow such a move.

Editing by Karzan Sulaivany