By Ryan Mauro
The Syriac Military Council, a Christian militia in Syria opposed to the Assad regime, condemned Turkey for bombing its U.S.-backed Kurdish allies who are fighting ISIS. The Christians accused Turkey of continuing the genocidal and anti-democratic campaigns of the Ottoman Empire.
The statement reads in part:
“This attack came at the 102nd commemoration of the Syriac Assyrian, Armenian and Greek genocide ‘Sayfo,’ while Turkey is continuing the same policies against the people living in the Middle East, trying to overthrow the democratic project that our people are working together to reach a political and administrational system based on pluralism, justice, equality and democracy.”
Turkey’s airstrikes killed 40 Kurdish fighters in Iraq and 30 in Syria. The Kurds in Syria belonged to the People Defense Units (YPG). The Syriac Military Council (MFS) and its female wing, the Beth Nahrin Women Protection Forces, are allied with the YPG Kurds in a U.S.-backed alliance named the Syrian Democratic Forces.
The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) is a multi-ethnic coalition and it is leading the fight against ISIS as it prepares to attack Raqqa. Despite historical ethnic tensions, the Kurdish-led SDF was able to recruit so many Sunni Arabs that a top U.S. commander estimates that 60% of the fighters are Arab and 40% are Kurds.