'Kurds were tortured while you were dining with al-Assad,' PYD leader tells Ankara
Cansu Çamlıbel BRUSSELS
Kurds will not fight in Syria on Turkey’s behalf against Bashar al-Assad, PYD leader Salih Muslim told Hürriyet.Kurds will not fight in Syria on Turkey’s behalf against Bashar al-Assad, Democratic Union Party (PYD) leader Salih Muslim has said, demanding anti-tank weapons to help save Kobane.
“We have been in a fight against this [Bashar al-Assad] regime since 2004,” Muslim told daily Hürriyet in his Brussels office. “We were being tortured in intelligence basements while you were [dining with them] in Aleppo, Damascus and Ankara. Now you are saying we should ‘do this and that to the regime.’ We have a policy. We have repelled and fired them from our areas. Do you want us to fight against them in Damascus and be a soldier there instead of you? We will not do that. We have stopped being soldiers for others, which Kurds have done throughout history.”
Stating that a ground offensive was not necessary for Kobane, Muslim said anti-tanks would suffice for the Kurds to save the region.
“They do not need to give anything else but anti-tank weapons if they really want to help our people in the region. A ground offensive would make things worse, not better. Who would they conduct the ground war against? Is it against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant [ISIL]? ISIL is in Istanbul,” said Muslim, adding ISIL should first be cleaned from Istanbul before a ground offensive was conducted. “If help comes we will both keep Kobane and repel ISIL.”
Muslim said their stance has not changed in counting a one-sided safe haven from Turkey as an occupation, claiming that Turkey had a different agenda for the region.
“[Turkey] wants to fix these regions according to its own will and wants to demographically change the area,” said Muslim, adding that if a safe haven was formed under the guidance of international forces, they would live in their own lands according to an international agreement. “We do not have anything to say against that.”