Apr 04 2018

Afrin will be a part of Antakya in Turkey- spokesperson of Afrin Liberation Congress

Hatay Governate will be responsible for coordinating the administration in Afrin, which will be attached to Antakya, the seat of Hatay province 12 miles away from the Syrian border, Hasan Şindi, the spokesperson of the Afrin Liberation Congress (ALC), told Deutsche Welle (DW) on Mar. 30.

Turkish troops and allied Syrian militias captured the town centre of Afrin on Mar. 18, after a two-month offensive to clear Syrian Kurdish forces from the northwest Syrian town. The Afrin Liberation Congress on the future of Afrin was held in Gaziantep, southeast Turkey, on the same day, and an assembly of 35 members was elected during the meeting.

Şindi told DW that the list of names elected has been submitted to the Turkish authorities and the members of the assembly will visit Afrin after their names have been officially approved.

According to Şindi, a deputy governor will be appointed to Afrin but will act as a governor, while Hatay governate will assume the task of coordination.

“A governor will be appointed to Afrin. Yet, we don’t know who this person will be. It is still uncertain. But it will be someone from Turkey and will be appointed by the government. There will also be a district governor, again from Turkey,” said Şindi and added that “Afrin will be (counted as) a part of Antakya”.

Şindi also explained the steps taken for ensuring the security in Afrin, noting that there will be no military force in the city and the security will be provided only by the police forces composed of FSA fighters and locals from Afrin.

Vahap Coşkun, an academic from Dicle University explained to DW the road map Turkey follows in places under its control in Syria. Coşkun said that Turkey establishes a dual administration: “On the one hand they establish an assembly composed of the representatives of local people in the region and those representatives take role in sustaining daily life. Moreover, Turkey appoints its own bureaucrats to ensure general coordination.”