Assad in Idlib to Show Support to Kurds Against Turkish Aggression

Wednesday, 23 October, 2019 - 06:30
Asharq Al-Awsat

Without directly naming them, Syrian regime leader Bashar Assad said on Tuesday he supports Kurdish fighters that are currently confronting an assault launched by Ankara in the northeast of the country.

Assad visited on Tuesday the Syrian military units operating on the front lines in Idlib’s southern countryside and Hama’s northern countryside at a time when Syria began deploying its forces in the Kurdish self-administered areas, based on a deal reached between the two sides.

“We are ready to support any group that takes up popular resistance against Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Turkey,” he said, adding that this is not a political decision, but a constitutional and national duty. “If we don’t do that, we don’t deserve the homeland.”

Turkey this month began an assault against its Syrian Kurdish factions in Syria’s northeast with the help of opposition forces who control swathes of territory north of Idlib.

Assad said it was a priority "to communicate with different political and military forces present on the ground" in facing the invasion ordered by Erdogan.

Syria had always blamed the Kurds for their separatism and even called them “traitors” for their alliance with the US, which offered them an important support in their battle against ISIS.

However, on Tuesday, Assad asserted that what governs the priorities is the military situation on the ground.

“We are not in a position to blame others. We are in the heart of the battle and the right thing to do is to gather our forces and oust the invaders sooner or later,” he said.

Kurds have felt betrayed by the United States when it ordered its troops to pull out from northern Syria. Fearing they will be at the mercy of the Turkish offensive, the turned to the Damascus regime.

They announced they had reached an agreement with the regime for it to deploy its troops along the border with Turkey to confront the incursion.

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