PYD's Muslim proposes Rojava model against Sykes-Picot

Speaking at the conference titled “Kurdish Project in the Middle East 100 Years After the Sykes-Picot” at French Senate, PYD Co-chair Salih Müslim proposed the Rojava model against the Sykes-Picot model.

A conference titled “Kurdish Project in the Middle East 100 Years After the Sykes-Picot” was held at the French Senate yesterday.

Organized by the Democratic Kurdish Council in French and hosted by communist senator Michel Billout, the conference started with one minute's silence in memory of all Kurdistan revolution's martyrs.

Holding the opening speech of the conference, which came after the Kurdish Conference at the European Parliament on 7-8 December, senator Billout pointed out that the situation in Turkey is evolving into a civil war. Billout said: “40 million Kurds have no state today and are subjected to a mass atrocity in Iran, Syria and Turkey.


Holding the last speech in the first session of the conference, PYD (Democratic Union Party) Co-chair Salih Müslim greeted their friends, in Kurdish, saying: "Our friends have expectations from us. We promise to protect the human values for ourselves, friends and all humanity."

Müslim proposed the Rojava model against the deepening crisis and wars based on the Sykes-Picot agreement of a century ago, and warned that a new Sykes-Picot was on the agenda today.

PYD Co-chair underlined that the systems created with the Sykes-Picot agreement are nation states that fail to understand that the Middle East is made up of various peoples, religions and cultures.

Müslim said: "The nation-state model did not accord the Middle East reality. The states founded with this system then started to conflict with each other. For 100 years now, there is a war ongoing with impositions of superiority and the sense 'this land is mine and the other is yours'. It is not sufficient to lay all the faults on Sykes-Picot. The nation-state model is not a system that defends peoples."


Muslim said it was the nation-state mindset that led to the Armenian genocide and massacre of hundreds of thousands of Assyrians and Syriacs. Recalling the destruction of minorities and different cultures in Turkey, Müslim said: "It was nation-states that massacred these peoples. There is an effort to destroy Kurds in Turkey for a hundred years now. Still, they couldn't finish the Kurds."


Müslim continued, "However, this situation has proved one more thing; a folk that has a will and resists cannot be destroyed. It came out that the nation-state model based on a particular religion, nation and sect is not a solution. In order to build a new house, the old one must be demolished."

Remarking that Kurds were a victim of the first Sykes-Picot agreement, Müslim said there is an intention to sacrifice Kurds to a second Sykes-Picot that has not emerged clearly yet.

Pointing to the current situation in Syria, Müslim said there is a need for a new system in the Middle East today, remarking that this new system should base on democratic nations.


Müslim stressed that they propose a system in which nobody will massacre or assimilate another, adding: "For this reason, Kurds, Arabs and Syriacs united around an agreement in Rojava. We organized our people on this basis. We relied on the leadership of women and wanted them to be equal."

Remarking that Rojava should be secular due to the presence of various faith groups, PYD Co-chair said the project developed in Rojava could break the first Sykes-Picot and hinder a second Sykes-Picot.


Muslim added the followings: "Our ancestors would say that Kurds have no friends but the mountains. When we came forward to defend the values of humanity, we saw that humanity stood by us. During the Kobanê battle, we saw millions of people taking to the streets and supporting the Kurds. The oppressed and the poor stood by the Kurds. Those siding with democracy and freedom took sides with the Kurds, so much so that they declared November 1 as World Kobanê Day. Our struggle is aimed to protect the values of humanity. We promise to protect these values and to keep our struggle going for this purpose."