Belgian and French victims' associations visit Northern and Eastern Syria

A delegation made up of members of Belgian and French associations of victims of terrorism, led by Chamberlain Georges Dallemagne, is currently holding talks in Northern and Eastern Syria.

Representatives of Belgian and French victims' associations are currently in Qamişlo for talks with the autonomous administration of Northern and Eastern Syria. The content of the talks is about security risks in the region in view of the impending resurgence of the jihadist militia Islamic State. The fight against ISIS is being undermined by ongoing occupation attacks in Turkey. The talks also address the issues of mechanisms for the repatriation of foreign ISIS members in detention centers and prisons in the autonomous area as well as protective measures for victims of ISIS terrorism. The background is likely to be the “Global Framework” initiative with which the United Nations intends to support the repatriation of ISIS women and children from Northeast Syria to their countries of origin.

The delegation includes Georges Dallemagne, a member of the Belgian Chamber of Deputies, Philippe Vansteenkiste, chairman of the V-Europe victims' association, and Rodî Melek from the French association of victims of terrorist violence ( They were received on Saturday by the foreign affairs representative of the Autonomous Administration, Abdulkarim Omar, and the deputy department heads Fanar al-Kait and Abeer Elia.

Autonomous Administration has to sit to the negotiating table

The meeting was influenced by the protests against the Turkish jihadist occupation, two years ago, of Serêkaniyê and Girê Spî. Abdulkarim Omar emphasized that the occupation of parts of the country was preventing a solution to the crisis in Syria. As long as Turkey acts as an occupying power and does not withdraw its troops, no political solution can be achieved. In addition, he reminded that the Autonomous Administration is being excluded from the negotiating table for the Syria crisis at the instigation of Turkey. "If you are aiming for a long-term solution to this conflict, then you have to enter into negotiations with all actors," said Omar, adding that international efforts must be made towards the participation of Northeast Syria in the talks. The Kurdish diplomat pointed out the continued war crimes of the Turkish army and its jihadist proxies, that want to destabilize the region and expand the illegal occupation zone by hitting the civilian population.

Good cooperation between Northern and Eastern Syria and Belgium

The delegation members praised the commitment in the autonomous areas against ISIS terrorism and other threats - despite the aggression from outside. Georges Dallemagne, who is also a doctor and was a member of the parliamentary commission of inquiry into the terrorist attacks in Brussels on 22 March 2016, welcomed the good cooperation between the Autonomous Administration and Belgium in the return of Belgian nationals. He hoped that relations between Brussels and Qamishlo would continue to deepen. It is a "great resistance" what Northern and Eastern Syria is leading to defend its peoples and against ISIS, according to Dallemagne. The delegation will held meetings with civil society organizations.