Former PYD co-chair: anyone who attacks Northeast Syria will ‘face the same fate as ISIS’

Former PYD co-chair: anyone who attacks Northeast Syria will ‘face the same fate as ISIS’ _ The Region

former co-chair of the Democratic Union Party (PYD) Salih Muslim said that any force attacking areas held by the Syrian Democratic Forces will “face the same fate as Daesh”, responding to remarks by Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Moualem Monday morning.

“After Idlib, our target is east of the Euphrates,” al-Moualem said, according to Reuters, alluding to areas of northeast Syria currently controlled by the SDF.

The SDF currently hold about 25 percent of Syria’s territory, and have liberated more of Syria from ISIS than any other armed group— including government forces.

While the Syrian Democratic Council (SDC) maintains that they seek to remain a part of a federal and democratic Syria, senior Syrian government officials often claim that the areas administered by the SDC must return to “Syrian sovereignty” before the war ends. Talks laying a framework for the region’s status in a post-war Syria occured throughout the past several months, but were paused due to disagreements.

“Negotiations with Damascus did not stop because of US pressure, but [by] the limited path set by the regime which was not enough to achieve any progress,” SDC spokesman Amjad Othman said in early October. “Going to Damascus was an independent decision and we are still open to continue the dialogue with Damascus.”

The framework proposed in the talks was most likely related to Syrian Law 107, which allows for limited decentralization with significant central government oversight.

Officials in Northeast Syria continue to stress their support for a peaceful resolution to the conflict with input from all Syrians. In a statement issued to Moualem’s remarks, the SDC warned that the threat “does not serve the solution in Syria and undermines the movement towards dialogue.”

“We affirm that we do not believe in the military solution and we were not involved in any armed conflict against the Syrian government, and that SDF are defensive forces that defend themselves against any attack,” the statement continued.

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