Jeen Press – Syria
A parliamentary delegation from the National Council of Austria met with officials from the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) in Qamishli in Syria on Saturday.
The delegation arrived at the Autonomous Administration’s Department of Foreign Relations after travelling for hours from their crossing at the Semalka border. They were received by the Co-Chair of the Foreign Relations Commission, Dr Abdulkarim Omar, and his staff. The delegation includes the parliamentarians Ewa Dziedzic (an Austrian Member Of Parliament from the Green Party), People’s Party MP Reinhold Lopatka and Thomas Schmidinger, a professor of political science at the University of Vienna.
A source from AANES’ Foreign Relations Department said Dr Abdulkarim Omar discussed a number of important issues with the Austrian delegation, including the political situation and the latest developments of the region and Turkey’s attacks.
After two hours of their closed meeting, Dziedzic and Lopatka made a public statement about their meeting. Lopatka expressed his deep gratitude for AANES’ struggle against ISIS. He stated that ISIS’ terrorism threat was a global one and he recognised that AANES was holding detainees in its prisons and camps.
Lopatko stated that the Austrian delegation expressed its support for the proposal to establish an international tribunal to try ISIS fighters, because the majority of European countries ”will not take these foreign terrorist fighters back”. He expressed the view that “it is our obligation to support AANES. The situation is getting worse because of COVID-19 and our focus is not as strong in this region as it was before, because people are struggling to fight this virus”. Dziedzic added that: ”Europe should not forget about AANES, and this is the reason why we are here”.