Ilham Ahmed, the chair of the Executive Committee of the Syrian Democratic Council (SDC), said that their relations with Sweden and Finland will not be affected by the trilateral memorandum signed by the two Nordic countries and Turkey, Hawar News (ANHA) reported on Friday.
The memorandum was signed as part of a deal for Turkey to drop its objection to the accession of Sweden and Finland to NATO in exchange for commitments by the latter to crack down on Kurdish activists with alleged ties to the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), ‘not provide support’ to the People’s Protection Units (YPG) in north Syria, and lift arms embargoes imposed on Turkey after its occupation of parts of north Syria in 2019.
As YPG constitutes a major component of the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the armed force of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES), the assurance not to provide support for the YPG has led to questions whether it implies a further impact on the relations between Sweden and Finland and the AANES.
Speaking to ANHA, Ilham Ahmed said:
“We have good relations with Sweden and Finland. They have provided humanitarian aid to us through the Global Coalition against the Islamic State. Our relations will continue, particularly in the context of combatting terror. Thousands of ISIS affiliates are currently incarcerated in prisons under the control of the AANES. The members of the Global Coalition should now assume more responsibility than before. They should not avoid their responsibilites in the face of Turkish administration’s threats. This is also an issue of national security for them.”
Ahmed also commented on the state of emergency recently declared by the AANES:
“The state of emergency has been declared against possible attacks for further invasion. These are not temporary measures and shall be extended, because we are now faced with a global war and we need to take measures in all fields.”