A possible Turkish attack on the northern Syrian town of Kobane will be met with resistance from the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and the Syrian regime troops stationed in the region, SDF commander Mazloum Abdi said in an interview on Thursday.
“We will fight in Kobani; it will not fall,” Abdi said. “It would be a massive war and a devastating one (but) the Turks will not achieve their goals and the war will spare none.”
The top Kurdish commander said there were 12,000 Syrian soldiers stationed around Kobane “whose sole duty is to defend Syrian territories”.
If Turkey attacks Manbij or Tel Rifaat, the regime and other forces will not allow it, Abdi said. “But no one is concerned about Kobani.”
In June, Syrian President Bashar al Assad said Syrian forces would directly fight against any Turkish attacks in areas where the Syrian army is positioned. However, the SDF is not aware of any up-to-date preparations by Assad’s government.
The group has also asked for more US sanctions against Turkey should Ankara launch an attack, as Abdi previously said he expected in February. The Turkish government may use an incursion into Kurdish-held northern Syria as a means to rile up nationalist support that it has lost in recent years, Abdi believes.
While the SDF has had its issues with Assad’s government, it agreed to Syrian regime forces to be stationed in the area it controls following Turkey’s military operations into northern Syria. There are still issues, but the two powers could reach a solution “only if Turkey is taken out of the equation, as it is the biggest obstacle”, Abdi said in the interview.