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 Syrian Kurds give ultimatum to Assad's security forces

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Syrian Kurds give ultimatum to Assad's security forces  21.7.2012  

Kurdistan flag is raised at the top of governmental buildings. The Kurdish people seized all government institutions in the Kurdish city of Kobane in West Kurdistan (Syrian Kurdistan) aka northern Syria. See Related Links 
July 21, 2012

AMSTERDAM,— A statement by the Union of Kurdish Coordination Committees (UKCC) on Friday called on all members of the Syrian army to withdraw from the Kurdish areas or face consequences.

“After liberating a part of our Kurdish region, we are warning all the pro-Assad forces in the Kurdish areas to either defect from this regime and withdraw peacefully, or they will be forced to leave against their will,” the statement read.

The UKCC statement also called on the Kurdish people to preserve all the government institutions and secure them from any damage, “because these are the property of the people, and all the neighbourhoods should be regularly protected by the Kurdish Popular Protection Units.”

Sherzad Yezidi, representative of the People’s Council of West Kurdistan in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, told Asharq Alawsat that liberating these Kurdish areas could be considered the first step of implementing the agreement signed last month between the Kurdish National Council [KNC] and the Democratic Union Party [PYD].

“All the Kurds are waiting for the liberation of Qamishli city, since it is the largest Kurdish city in Syria and it is considered as the political and administrative capital of the Kurdish region in the Syria, only then we will be able to breathe freedom in Syria’s Kurdistan,” Yezidi said.

As the Syrian regime started to lose control on many towns and neighbourhoods across the country, a number of Kurdish areas live in a state of partial liberty.

The Kurdish town of Kobane, northeast of Aleppo, was declared free of Syrian security forces on Wednesday, and the residents raised the Kurdish flag on different government buildings.

The Liberation of Kobane was declared by the joint forces of the Popular Protection Units – founded recently by the KNC and the PYD. Leaders of both groups said they would be responsible for maintaining order and protecting the lives of residents in Kurdish neighbourhoods.

Fawzi Shangal, the leader of the Kurdish Accord Party in Syria told Rudaw that the city of Amude and Efrin fell on Friday and they expect more areas to be liberated within hours.

Shangal said that the Kurdish cities fell without any major clashes. The forces of the Assad regime withdrew from the area, he said.

Hussein Kocher, representative of the PYD in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, told Asharq Alawsat newspaper on Friday that the liberation of Kobane was achieved when members of the security forces surrendered to Kurdish forces.

“As our joint Kurdish forces surrounded the governmental and security buildings, security forces had to choose either confrontation or surrender. They preferred to avoid any confrontations with our Kurdish forces, and they left the town,” Kocher said. “We are glad that the process of liberating Kobane is achieved peacefully without any bloodshed, and that is exactly what we were insisting since the beginning of the revolution--to avoid any clashes with the forces of the regime in the Kurdish region.”

Meanwhile, Kurdish activists reported on Friday that Qamishli—the largest Kurdish city in Syria—began to seize parts of the city from the Syrian government forces and raise the Kurdish flag.

By Adib Abdulmajid

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