Russian Official: Kurds deserve their ‘geographic right’
MOSCOW, Russia (Kurdistan24) – Kurdish views and positions should be considered since they play a major role in fighting against terrorism, stated a senior Russian official on Monday.
Deputy Chairman of the State Duma (Parliament) Sergei Zheleznyak told Kurdistan24 that Kurds are one of the most effective ground forces against Islamic State (IS) militants. Therefore, he believes that the international community should consider the Kurds' political demands.
“Kurds deserve to receive their geographic right in Iraq, Syria and the Middle East [in general],” he said.
Additionally, Zheleznyak noted that Kurds' participation in fighting terrorism helps determine the future of the Middle East. “Kurds strive to have a strong role and voice in shaping the future of the [region],” he said.
He also mentioned that Kurdish-related issues should be discussed by regional and international actors.
“[The Kurdish issue] should be discussed by regional and international powers so that [political] decisions will be made for all Kurdish regions, not [only] in Iraq and Syria,” he added.
The Duma's vice-chair also noted that Moscow supports Kurdish rights. “If Kurds ask for Russian participation in helping determine their future in the Middle East, for sure, Moscow will follow up on their request,” he concluded.
On March 17, Russian Ambassador to Iraq Ilya Morgunov told Kurdistan24 that Russia does not reject federalism in Iraq, and is not against Kurds deciding on self-determination in any future referendum. “We respect the decisions of the people. If Kurds choose independence, we will respect it,” Morgunov said.
Reporting by Khoshawi Mohamad and Mewan Dolamari
Editing by Benjamin Kweskin and Karzan Sulaivany