Interview about Afrin – With Metin Rhawi
The attacks on Afrin made international headlines. We have invited Metin Rhawi - Head of foreign affairs to an interview regarding Afrin. Thank you very much for coming…
Erdogan is talking about the extermination of Terrorists, what is the real reason of this attack?
We all know that Erdogan and his party AKP have a lot of domestic problems.
There are about 30 different ethnic groups living in Turkey and they are all more les indigenous people of this geographical area. This is one of the ways, which Erdogan is using in order to cover all his problems. Since the referendum of increasing the presidential power in Turkey, many democratically principals have been ousted by Erdogan and his party. He has imprisoned journalists, academicals and of course political opponents. The allegedly military cup was a starting point of all this oppression, towards the Turkish society.
Why did Turkey choose the current time for the offense?
The upcoming elections in Turkey are frightening Erdogan. Due to all electoral statistics and prognoses, Erdogan might lose the majority. Therefore, he has started to attack Afrin to cover. These attacks are infringing the international agreement due to no fact of danger can be registered from Syria to Turkish territory. Erdogans army attacks SDF - Syriac Democratic Forces, who are fighting for many years against ISIS alongside with the international coalition that is led by the USA. They are also representing a new will in the Middle East, that allows people respecting each other and coexist in a democratically way. The Arabs, Kurds, Syriacs and other smaller minorities have signed a Social contract that is one of the most democratically agreements, who have been ever made in order that different ethnicities, religions, cultures coexist. Erdogan can't accept that the people of Syria have agreed to cohabit. He is worried about this model, because it could be established in his territory, as the same ethnicities are living in the turkey.
Which position has the West (USA, Europe) in this situation?
The agenda of this countries is not easy to read so far. We are convinced that they will support our democratic establishment in Syria. We assume that they will take a clear stand with the new born democratic society, because USA and the international coalition have been our partners against fighting ISIS.
Did Russia take a stand on these attacks?
Due to many problems in Russia, Putin has act very unexpected, but we still believe that he prefers a democratic Syria rather than something else. The Russian presidential election will take place this year. It is very important for Putin to represent himself as the strong man of Russia. It is incomprehensible, that Putin supports and allows Erdogan to breach the Syrian borders in Afrin. Syria has been very loyal to Russia for a long time. We should not forget, that Afrin is a part of Syria even though it is controlled and secured by Syria North Democratic Federation. It is very strange that the Syrian regime does not act against Erdogan´s attacks. We are waiting for Bashar´s reaction for his own territorial borders and to defend the population of Syria, since he is the president.
How far are the Syriacs affected?
Everybody and all Syrians are affected by this violent breach on the Syrian borders including the Syriacs, although not many are living in Afrin. Yesterday Kobani, today Afrin - We should keep this in mind and think about the next steps or acts of Erdogan and his army. The Syriacs in Syria are a part and partner of the political and military leadership of North Democratic Federation of Syria and Afrin is one of the regions.
Will MFS participate in this fight?
Syriac Military Council is a co-founder of The SDF and have the obligation to participate in liberating Afrin. However, this is something MFS have to decide.
I would not be surprised if MFS participates in very near future.
What are the consequences of these attacks for the Syriacs?
Erdogan has already launched rockets into Syriac inhabited areas like Qamishly, Rish Aino and Derike, obviously we are affected by Erdogans aggression.
What are the next steps for us?
We urge all Syriacs in Europe to take a clear stand on Afrin and the people of Syria. We have an obligation to support the freedom fighters SDF and have to participate in different demonstrations and other democratic activities, in favor of Afrin all around the world. We also demand that NATO stops its own member Turkey. We also wonder, how the UN defends the democratic will of the people in Afrin? If not defending Afrin and stop Erdogan´s occupation?