Politics, Middle East

Opposition to form parliament in Syria's Afrin

Parliament will have representatives from Kurdish, Alevi, Arab and Ezidi communities, says opposition representative

20.03.2018
Opposition to form parliament in Syria's Afrin Representative of the opposition in Syria’s Afrin region Hasan Sindi

GAZIANTEP, Turkey 

Opposition in Syria’s Afrin region will establish a local parliament with 30 representatives from Kurdish, Alevi, Arab and Ezidi communities, according to a representative of the opposition Tuesday.

Hasan Sindi from the opposition in Afrin is coordinating a “liberation congress” for the region from southeastern Turkey’s Gaziantep province.

This congress held its first session Sunday.

Around 100 people from Afrin, Kurds, Arabs, Alevis and Ezidis communities, who had escaped the cruelty of YPG/PKK terrorists, had attended the congress, which discussed rebuilding of the region and how to ensure local residents return to their homes.

The congress also took several decisions such as providing peace and security in Afrin and nearby villages; respecting all religions and sects, and handing over all administration of city and districts to community representatives.

Sindi told Anadolu Agency that Turkey had carried out precision strikes so that civilians would not get hurt during Operation Olive Branch in Afrin.

He said he hoped Afrin residents would return to their homes and live there peacefully.

"We have ended the congress and we will start our work.

“We will go to Afrin and establish the parliament. In this parliament, there are representatives of Kurdish, Alevi, Arab and Ezidi communities.

“We want to form a police force for Afrin…Free Syrian Army [FSA] will stay in Afrin for a month…," he said.

Sindi said Afrin would be developed again with Turkey’s support.


Building 'new Afrin'

"The most important thing is to clear YPG/PKK completely from Afrin.

“This operation went well. May Allah bless Turkey,” he said, adding that Turkish president was keeping his promise when he said “We will give Afrin to Afrin residents".

He said the people of Afrin do not want any armed group in the region.

"We do not want any armed organization in Syria, including Assad. Everyone in Syria wants this."

He said the Syrian regime and Russia had caused major damage to civilians in the civil war.

"We will build a new Afrin. We want to live there freely.

“Russia and the regime killed 170 people in one day but lives of civilians were taken care of during Operation Olive Branch and everyone knows this," he added.

Turkey launched the operation on Jan. 20 to clear terrorist groups from Afrin in northwestern Syria amid growing threats posed from the region.

On Sunday, Turkish-backed troops liberated the town of Afrin, which had been a major hideout for the YPG/PKK since 2012.

According to the Turkish General Staff, Operation Olive Branch has aimed to establish security and stability along Turkey's borders and the region as well as protect Syrians from the cruelty and oppression of terrorists.

It is being carried out under the framework of Turkey’s rights based on international law, UN Security Council resolutions, its self-defense rights under the UN Charter and respect for Syria's territorial integrity, the army said.

Reporting by Ridvan Korkulutas:Writing by Can Erozden

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