Syrian Kurds urge major powers to agree on no-fly zone after Turkey’s airstrikes

People gesture at US military vehicles driving in the town of Darbasiya next to the Turkish border, Syria April 28, 2017. REUTERS/Rodi Said

The Movement for a Democratic Society (TEV-DEM), governing coalition of the Kurdish de facto autonomous region in northern Syria (Rojava), is calling on major powers participating in the Syrian settlement process to agree on a no-fly zone in the country’s north in wake of the Turkish airstrikes on Kurds, TEV-DEM representative Muhammad Hassan told Sputnik.

Earlier this week, Turkish jets struck in northern Syria and Iraq the positions of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG).

“Now after this aggression, we firmly repeat our call for a no-fly zone over Northern Syria, and this demand is going to be part of our agenda in the following stage. Even though we have not been invited to Astana, we call upon the participants to accept a no-fly zone, and we will strongly confirm this demand in all the conferences held on Syria,” Hassan said.

Next week, the Kazakh capital will be hosting a new meeting on Syria with participation of the conflicting sides, three ceasefire guarantor states – Russia, Turkey and Iran, as well as the United Nations experts.

“We call upon super powers, like the US, the Russian Federation, and the EU countries to help us fulfill this demand,” Hassan said.

Ankara considers the PYD to be affiliated with the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which is listed as a terror group in Turkey, the United States and the European Union. However, the PYD and the YPG, as well as the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have been receiving support from the United States in fighting the Islamic State group in northern Syria.

US State Department expressed deep concern over Ankara having conducted a military action in Syria and Iraq without the anti-Islamic State coalition’s approval.