Ilham Ehmed: Al-Assad's declarations new but need deep discussion

Syrian Democratic Council executive council co-chair, Ilham Ehmed, said that Al-Assad’ statements about the need for a system different from pre-2011 for Syria are important but need deep negotiation.

The civil war that started in Syria ten years ago, on March 2011, has destroyed cities and killed hundreds of thousands of people. There is still no news about the fate of tens of thousands of people. Millions of people were displaced. Many cities, towns, villages and towns were destroyed and came under the control of mercenaries. Although dozens of groups that claim to have set out to save Syria from the current Assad administration have changed names several times, it has been proven that all of these groups are under the control of Turkey and Erdogan.

Many countries, other than Turkey, were involved in Syria's internal affairs, thus the civil war is still going on, and the peoples of Syria are prevented from finding a solution that really serves them. The Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad and his administration, which received support from Iran and Russia to survive, could not develop any solution. As a result, the crisis got worse.

Recently, Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad said that "Syria will not go back to before 2011. Syria can be governed by a decentralized administration." Declaration which gave way to a new discussion. Various groups are evaluating this new statement.

Ilham Ehmed, co-chair of the executive council of the Syrian Democratic Council (MSD), said that admitting that Syria will not be able to return to the pre-2011 era is an important development, but the answer to the question about where Syria would be going is as important as the declaration itself.

Evaluating the statements made by Al-Assad, Ehmed said: "Syria will not go back to 2011. That is true. We've been saying this for years. But where Syria will go is an important question. Identifying the problem correctly is half of the solution. Answering this correctly completes the solution to the problem. The regime has always said that Syria will remain the same as before. For the first time, the President changed this discourse and said that Syria cannot be governed by the pre-2011 system. He actually added that it can be governed by a decentralized system.”

Ehmed said that, to actually fulfil the statements by Bashar Al-Assad, Syria must undergo a change and review itself legally, politically, culturally and economically. “If these things happen, it is possible to leave the central system and move to a decentralized system. In his statements, the Syrian President referred to a decentralized system according to Article 107. According to this article, the system is to be carried out through local governments, that is, municipalities. However, later the essence of this law was removed. It has been emptied of content. Indeed, the governor, the head of the city council, the mayor, etc. ended up actually being selected by the central government, thus once again the article was emptied of content. In other words, charges were supposed to be chosen through elections, but instead they were assigned by a central authority."

Ehmed continued: “In all our meetings with the regime and the Syrian administration, they were telling us 'let's agree on a system based on appointments'. We replied that we also have a system called the Autonomous Democratic system. If we were to really talk about a new system, we should also talk about that, about what we can keep and what we can change. But they kept saying 'no, let's talk about Article 107'. We were not opposed to talk about it. We also tried to discuss what they call Article 107, but nothing came out in terms of a solution. Because they don't want to change the constitution. Unless you change the constitution, there will be no results or solutions, nothing will change.”

However, Ehmed said, “for the first time, the president admitted that Syria can’t go back to pre-2011. What we can say is that negotiations are a subject that requires long and deep discussions, and that this will serve a solution."