BEIRUT, LEBANON (5:40 P.M.) – Chief of the Asayish security forces in northern Syria, Ciwan Ibrahim, believes that the control of key oil infrastructures and the al-Bukamal Iraqi border crossing area in Deir Ezzor Governorate by Kurdish-led forces is more important than the battle for Raqqa city.
Ciwan Ibrahim cited the ‘Iranian project’ conspiracy theory as the pretext for his proposed reconsideration of Kurdish geopolitical priorities in Syria.
In a statement virtually identical to official line of the Israeli government, the security chief said that the “Iranian project” in Syria and the rest of the Middle East was more dangerous than the “ISIS project,” going on to claim that Iran was the mastermind behind aggravations between the Syrian government and the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
With this understanding expressed, Ciwan Ibrahim indirectly proposed that the seizing of energy resources and strategic boundaries still currently under ISIS occupation in Syria’s Deir Ezzor province (i.e. preventing them from being secured by eastward-driving pro-government forces) as a possible solution to the supposed Iranian threat and that such an objective should be given priority over the current Raqqa engagement.
In presenting this view, the security chief basically suggested that the Kurdish-led SDF’s war against ISIS should only currently be waged insofar as preventing the restoration of Syrian sovereignty by forces aligned to the internationally-recognized government in Damascus on the assumption that Iran (one of those allies) has sinister intentions for the entire Middle East which are apparently worse than what ISIS has so far done.
The Asayish is the policing apparatus of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) throughout YPG-held northern Syria. In August 2016, the units of Asayish attacked pro-government forces without provocation in the city of al-Hasakah, ejecting them from all but a small portion of the northern Levantine settlement.