Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) Commander in Chief Mazloum Abdî and the Counter-terrorism Group (CTG) Director General Wahab Halabjay met with Iraqi Kurdish politician Bafel Talabani of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) and Maj. Gen. Matthew McFarlane, commander of the international campaign against the Islamic State (ISIS) Combined Joint Task Force, to discuss preservation of northern Syria’s stability, Abdî announced.
The meeting took place amid escalating tensions between SDF and Turkey. The politicians discussed the political situation in Syria’s Kurdish-held region, known to Kurds as Rojava, and the Kurdistan Region of Iraq (KRI), stressing a need for peaceful resolution, PUK Media reported.
The SDF will never forget PUK’s “steadfast support over the years”, Abdî said, and praised the CTG for crucial contributions to anti-ISIS efforts in northern Syria.
PUK President Bafel Jalal Talabani met with Commander @mazloumAbdi in presence of head of CTG. Peaceful resolution of current situation was emphasized and PUK's continued support was reiterated. pic.twitter.com/e0sf7lscAj
— Bafel Jalal Talabani (@Bafeltalabani) December 20, 2022
Meanwhile Talabani said PUK remained dedicated to finding a peaceful solution to problems faced by Kurds. “Our relations with Rojava will certainly continue and develop,” he added. “The PUK considers itself the servant of all Kurds. Being Kurds is our pride, and our survival depends on our unity.”
Talabani called for “greater coordination and cooperation” among Kurds and said everybody could thus “achieve greater success”, particularly as regards a stretch of unsecured land at the Iraqi-Syrian border where “terrorists” have been mobilising.
The PUK is an influential, left-leaning political party in the KRI. It splintered from the ruling Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) which does not have strong relations with Syrian Kurds.