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'No problem' if Damascus fights Turkey: Syria Kurds

Local | 2018-02-12 21:18:00
'No problem' if Damascus fights Turkey: Syria Kurds
Syria's Kurds said Monday they have "no problem" if the regime in Damascus intervenes on their side to help push back an assault by Turkey in the Afrin region.

Ankara has been waging an offensive against Syria's Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) militia in the frontier region since Jan. 20.

While the United States has given armed support to the YPG against the Daesh (ISIS) group in Syria, Turkey says the militia is a "terrorist" offshoot of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

"We don't have a problem with the entry of the Syrian army to defend Afrin and its border in the face of the Turkish occupation," YPG commander Sipan Hamo said at a press conference.

Long oppressed by Damascus, the Kurds have taken advantage of the conflict that began in 2011 to secure de facto autonomy over Syria's northern regions.

Kurdish authorities called in late January for the regime to intervene by sending its forces on the border with Turkey.

Damascus has denounced the "aggression" by Ankara but did not react to the appeal as the Kurds rejected allowing the regime to redeploy troops in the region and reestablish state control.

Any alliance between Damascus and the Kurds could prove tricky for Washington as it is strongly opposed to President Bashar Assad.

AFP

 
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