With a couple of weeks left to go, the Syria peace talks in Astana, Kazakhstan are looking to be one of the biggest efforts to end the war in months. The big question is how many factions will end up attending, with agreements not in place for an awful lot of Syrian rebel factions.
One thing you definitely won’t see in the Astana talks is any Kurds, however, as the PYD has confirmed that they are explicitly not invited, even though they and their military faction the YPG are both willing to take part if they were allowed to.
The reason behind this is that Turkey was involved in putting the talks together, and Turkey is bound and determined that no Kurdish factions be involved in the process, part of their effort to position the Kurdish factions as the equivalent of ISIS.
The YPG of course was also excluded from the ongoing Syrian ceasefire for the same reason, as Turkey is currently attacking ISIS and intends to attack the YPG-held city of Manbij next, meaning the Turkish government wants to ensure the ceasefire does not in any way threaten their ongoing military offensive.
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