Syrian Kurds hope for recognition of federalism from US president-elect

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From the ceremonies of the declaration of federalism in Rojava, Rumelan, northeastern Syria. File photo: ARA New

ARA News

Erbil – Sinam Mohammad is the European Representative for Northern Syria – Rojava (NSR), the de-facto government in Kurdish-populated northern Syria. On Thursday, she told ARA News that Syrian Kurds hope to get more support from the American President-Elect, Donald Trump.

“We congratulate the American people on their new president. We hope President Trump can play a positive role to end the war and bloodshed in Syria,” Mohammad said.

Saleh Muslim, the co-Chair of the governing Democratic Union Party, also congratulated Trump on his electoral victory. “We congratulate the American people on the election of their new president, Donald Trump. We hope for closer cooperation for a safe Syria,” he said.

In an exclusive interview with ARA News, Rojava’s European representative said that Syrian Kurds are seeking support for their federalist aspirations. “We hope that the policy of the USA, with the new president, will give more positive support to the Kurds, recognizing their right to build a federal system for Rojava and northern Syria,” she said.

“[We want Trump to] support Kurds in Rojava economically and politically as they are defeating ISIS in the region. Rojava needs support in development and construction, rebuilding cities destroyed by ISIS, such as Kobane,” Mohammad added, employing a common acronym for the Islamic State (ISIS).

The Kurdish representative also expressed hope that President Trump would halt Turkish interference in Syria and support the NSR self-administration.As for Syria, we hope that he can play a better role: putting an end to the war and bloodshed, […] getting rid of terrorist groups and stopping Turkey from threatening and interfering in Syria and Rojava,” she concluded.

Zara Salih, a member of the Yekiti Party’s Political Committee, echoed Mohammad. She told ARA News that the Kurds in Syria are looking for America to support their federalist project. “We Syrian Kurds are looking for American support to help establish a federal system in Syria because we don’t agree with the Syrian regime or opposition,” she said.

Salih added that neither President Assad’s government nor the armed opposition currently recognizes the NSR or any collective Kurdish rights in Syria. “[Neither side will] give Kurds any national rights. They reject federalism because they believe that it will divide Syria,” she said.

The Syrian Kurds previously had some contacts with Trump’s National Security Team. In May, NSR representative Ilham Ehmed met with Donald Trump’s foreign policy advisor, Walid Phares.

Phares previously told Kurdistan24 that the US under Trump will gather all its allies in Syria against ISIS, including those Kurdish militias operating out of the northern part of the country.

Speaking for Donald Trump, the senior advisor said that the US would support the Kurdish civil society and Kurdish, Sunni, Shia and Christian militias. Phares envisions a US-backed “freedom area” spanning the length and breadth of northern and eastern Syria.

Reporting by: Wladimir van Wilgenburg | Source: ARA News 

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