Kurds’ demanding their own federal areas in the Middle East hope to have full rights, said activist and member of the Iranian Komala Kurdish party, Sahar Amiri.
When asked whether analysts are correct to describe Kurds’ calls for federalism as an attempt to declare independence, Amiri replied, “it is not correct.” But she added, “there is nothing wrong,” if Kurds were to come out and announce their desire for secession.
Opposition groups are bound by their common goal which is to continue their pursuit against dictatorial governments and they “will continue to be active and reactive to all the events and developments taking place in the region.”
“No doubt that the Arab Spring is also a Kurdish Spring, because ethnic groups in Middle East who are non-Arabs were able to get their rights in Morocco, Libya, Algeria.”
With the advent of the Arab Spring, the Berbers, North Africa’s original inhabitants, were able to gain some rights which were unprecedented, like recognition of their language. Libya too saw a radio show airing in the Berber language for the first time, after the toppling of strongman Muammar Qaddafi.
Despite Kurds’ sacrifices ─ like what had happened in the 1980s when Saddam Hussein chemically gassed an Iraqi Kurdish town of Halabja ─ Kurds have been able to make some strides, said Amiri.
“Abdul Basit Saidi [recently elected as the new head of the opposition group, Syrian National Council] has become the highest ranking official in the Syrian opposition which shows that our people [Kurds] are able to succeed.”
Kurdish-dominated cities in Syria like Afreen and Kobani in the northern province of Aleppo, and Derek and Amouda cities in the northern eastern province of al-Hasaka were able to retain control of their areas.
At a joint press conference with U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, when she was visiting Turkey to discuss the Syrian crisis, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said that the Levant country can’t be turned into a haven for Kurdistan’s Workers Party (PKK). Turkey has long fought separatist Kurds and labeled PKK as a terrorist organization.
The parliamentarian who, said foreign powers’ conflicting interests and their proxies in the region have worked against Kurds reaching their aspiration, added: “We have no alliance with foreigners and we have protected the brotherhood we have with the nations we lived with.”
Asked about the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, and how Jalal al-Talabani, was able to become the country’s first Kurdish president, she said that Kurds were able to gain some of their rights before the U.S. invasion.
“Kurds in Iraq and Syria were the initiators against dictatorship and we want our full rights, not short of anything …the federal system can only guarantee that our rights will be kept complete.”
Asked if Kurds in Iran have any common goals with the Iranian Persian opposition, she said: “Persians who are fighting for democracy do not wish to apply democracy to nations such as Kurds, Azeris, Arabs and this goes back to racist reasoning… There is also classist oppression from Persian elite.”
Oppression against Arabs in Syria or Persians in Iran is against individual freedoms but for other non-majority groups such as Kurds it is ethnic and collective, she said. “Persians or Arabs did not lose their freedoms because of their ethnicities.”