Syrian Kurd groups to try to unite against Assad

January 19, 2012 16:51


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ARBIL, Iraq - Syrian Kurdish groups opposed to Syrian President Bashar Assad will try to unite this month to explain their autonomy demands to Arab groups trying to topple the Syrian leader, activists said on Thursday.

While security forces have clashed daily with protesters and insurgents demanding Assad's downfall in mainly Sunni Arab towns, Syrian Kurdish areas have remained relatively calm, despite many Kurds' long-standing opposition to the government.

Syrian Kurdish exile leaders say they do not trust the Arab opposition to heed their demands for self-rule in the mainly Kurdish northeast of the country.

Kurdish groups representing Syria's largest ethnic minority are also divided among themselves, with some factions backed by Iraqi Kurds, and another by Turkish Kurd rebels of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), independent analysts said.

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