On November 24, Turkey President Recep Tayyip Erdogan ruled out any place for the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its armed wing, the People’s Protection Units (YPG), in the upcoming Syrian National Dialogue conference in the Russian city of Sochi, according to the Turkish Hürriyet Daily News newspaper.
“We discussed the issue of the Syria national dialogue congress in detail. We, as three countries, will decide on who will be invited to the congress. Sub-commissions established by our foreign ministries will make the necessary studies beforehand,” Erdoğan said during the press conference in Sochi.
The Turkish president said that Turkey believes that all Syrian groups should be invited to the upcoming Syrian National Dialogue conference in Sochi. However, Erdogan stressed that Turkey’s position on “terrorist organizations such as the YPG and the PYD is clear”.
Erdogan also said that he believes that Putin shares Turkey’s “sensitivity about the PYD and the YPG”, and added that Syrian President Bashar al-Assad “also objects to the possibility of such an entity”, according to Hürriyet.
Meanwhile, an official of the YPG told the Russian Interfax news agency that the groups are willing to attend the upcoming Syrian National Dialogue conference in Sochi. However, the official revealed that they had not received any invitation yet.
“We want to participate in any conference that may help to stop the war [in Syria], but to begin a new war … Syrian themselves should solve Syria’s problems, foreign players should have a positive role, and not invade the country [Syria], like what Turkey is doing,” the YPG official told Interfax during a phone call.
The PYD likely view the upcoming Syrian National Dialogue conference in Sochi as its last chance to be a part of any future political solution in Syria, as it was excluded from Geneva and Astana talks previously.
However, the recent developments suggest that the YPG and the PYD will not attend the conference on an official level, due to the Turkish pressure and possible pressure from Iran and the Syrian government.
The Turkish president didn’t rule out working with Syria President Bashar al-Assad against the YPG on November 24. This could mean that not only Turkey, but also the Syrian government is against the YPG in Sochi.