Staffan de Mistura, the United Nations (UN)’s special envoy for Syria

Syrian Kurds must be given role in drafting new constitution: UN envoy

The United Nations special envoy for Syria says Syrian Kurds should be allowed to take part in drafting a new constitution for the Arab country.

Staffan de Mistura told Russia’s RIA news agency in an interview published on Tuesday that the Kurds should not be ignored and their representatives must be allowed to take part in producing the initial version of such a document.

Western diplomats have revealed that the UN has hosted two sets of technical talks on a future constitution with various Syrian opposition groups in the Swiss city of Lausanne in recent weeks, according to Reuters.

The Syrian government was yet to comment on de Mistura’s remark or the revelation reported by Reuters.

De Mistura’s remarks are, however, very likely to draw reactions from Ankara, which is wary of armed Turkish groups in Syria, Iraq, and Turkey itself.

The Turkish government regards Turkish groups fighting in Syria an affiliate of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or the PKK, an internationally-designated terrorist group that has been involved in an armed conflict with the government in Ankara.

The United States, meanwhile, considers the Kurds as a main force on the ground in the fight against the Takfiri Daesh terrorist group. The US has armed the Kurdish fighters but has said it would take the arms back once Daesh is routed.