Iraqi Kurdish government recognizes Rojava cantons

Iraqi Kurdish government recognizes Rojava cantons

Zeynep Gürcanlı ANKARA
Iraqi Kurdish government recognizes Rojava cantons

The KRG’s decision came soon after the visit of PYD co-chair Müslim.

The parliament of the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in northern Iraq voted to formally recognize the cantons established by the Democratic Union Party (PYD) in Syria’s Rojava region on Oct. 15.

The KRG parliament decided to officially recognize the three cantons in the predominantly Kurdish region of Rojava in northern Syria, after PYD head Salih Muslim visited the KRG capital Arbil.

The Kurdish-populated town of Kobane, located in the Rojava district on the Turkey–Syria border, has been under attack from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) for over a month. While around 200,000 people have recently fled the area for Turkey, PYD fighters remain in Kobane defending the town.
The country-wide protests that led to the deaths of 37 people in Turkey last week were organized against the Turkish government’s perceived passivity in the face of ISIL attacks on Kobane.

The KRG parliament voted to recognize the three cantons in Rojava and also give financial aid to the cantons. Despite the vote, the government in northern Iraq led by Massoud Barzani has still yet to recognize Rojava.

Following the start of the civil war in Syria in 2011, the three Kurdish cantons of Afrin, Jazeera and Kobane were formed in the densely Kurdish-populated north of the country after the forces of the Bashar al-Assad regime withdrew. Up until Oct. 16, the KRG had not recognized the cantons.