Another round in Syrian negotiations

The following is an article by the Syrian Democratic Council (MSD) Co-chair Ilham Ehmed for the Özgürlükçü Demokrasi newspaper, translated by ANF English service.

As always, another meeting is starting in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia with the Syrian opposition. It is in preparation for Geneva. But, the invitees to the meeting don’t have anything at hand yet. The parties organizing the meeting are aiming for a consensus among the so-called opposition. They aim to create unity among the opposition. Before the meeting even began, there came resignations. Which is natural, because the invitees were invited so they cannot come to a consensus. So there would be no solution again. Everybody knows they won’t be bringing about a solution, but they insist on being in the forefront at all times. Saudi Arabia wants to play a role here. But in Riyadh 1, due to Turkey’s pressure, they rescinded the invitation to the PYD. What will happen now? Will Turkey’s pressure be effective this time? Or will there be bold steps for a solution?

If negotiations continue like this always, we will start saying the negotiations will not reach any result unless they are held on Syrian territory. The path will not be right.

Geneva and Sochi are on the agenda. The Geneva meeting will be held with the results of the discussions in Riyadh. And the Sochi meeting will be held in Russia with the goal to declare the end of ISIS for the Syrian regime. Turkey wants to be influential in Sochi, Geneva and Riyadh. Iran on the other hand wants to hold the initiative, but it can’t impose itself like in the past. Saudi Arabia now wants to take this role from Turkey, that is why they are hosting the meeting. In such meetings, Syria is not influential and doesn’t have the deciding power. They want to prepare everything behind closed doors. Demanding Syria to sign such decisions will remain fruitless.

However much they wish to declare the end of ISIS in Sochi, in reality ISIS continues to wield power. There is a greater danger. It may not be called ISIS, but it’s still terror. They act with an invasion mentality. The war launched with the abolition mentality and nationalism in mind means the genocide of society. That is why we say, ISIS may be gone but their mentality is still prevalent in Syria. But still, other groups fan the flames of war and intensify it. They create instability and take on the role of ISIS.

That is why it is imperative that stability in the region is protected. Rebuilding the villages, districts and cities, providing basic vital needs for the peoples and doing so in a planned way are important and meaningful. Democratic developments and changes in Syria, the protection, security and strengthening of stability are possible through supporting local administrations and governments.

We see this every day. Thirst, hunger, children in tents who can’t go to school. Children say they haven’t been to school for five years. They want to go back to their studies. Again to protect the hopes of the people, these regions must be strongly defended. Support for schools must increase. Resolving these issues is more meaningful than the resolution of all other issues and all the meetings. There have been meetings for seven years, but nobody has comprehended anything from any of them yet. So, meetings and negotiations held on Syrian territory are more important. A meeting held in Syria will both gain some gravity and negotiations will lead to results. Occasionally new hope for a solution emerges. Hope emerges like a spark in the dark. But then it dissolves again quickly. Because the envelope hasn’t been prepared yet. And that causes the Syrian people to lose a lot. Hope, faith, love and unity all weaken. The morality of society changes. To overcome this is only possible through a true revolution, an honest leader and correct strategy. That is why the political void and chaos and the situation of society in Syria can only be resolved through organization. Do the people of Syria have this strength? The ever constant desire of the people for freedom will become a reality.