Now that the TurkReich has seized Afrin, the question now looms, who will manage the affairs of the people still there? This, by the way, is the start of the victory in Afrin ultimately costing the TurkReich far more than it won.
|Erdogan’s conundrum: Who will govern Afrin?|
Turkey’s military operation in the Syrian district of Afrin has completed its first stage, which was the seizure of the city of Afrin. After this difficult episode, Turkey is now taking its efforts into the political arena. It is hoping to expel the fighters of the Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) from the district, but it has to do so without contravening article 49 of the Fourth Geneva Convention, which provides that “individual or mass forcible transfers… are prohibited, regardless of their motive.”
Turkey should also refrain from resorting to manhunts. This will complicate the process even further, because ill-intentioned individuals may crop up and mislead the authorities into targeting the wrong people, for reasons of personal rift, political or commercial rivalry, or greed.
Turkey’s ultimate objective was to dismantle the cantonal structure established by the strongest Kurdish political party in Syria, the Democratic Union Party (PYD), and set up a more representative administration in the district. But UN Security Council Resolution 2254 provides that the political transition in Syria will be “Syrian-led and Syrian-owned.” In line with this UN framework, the Turkish authorities, on March 18, the day Afrin city center was seized, convened a meeting in Gaziantep under the title of the “Afrin Liberation Congress” and elected 30 delegates to represent Afrin’s population of Arabs, Turkmens and Kurds who do not support the PYD. It is not an easy task to find in Afrin Kurds who do not support this party, because this district is the biggest Kurdish agglomeration in Syria.