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The civil war now engulfing Syria emerged from its people's desire for political change. But the war is not universal: Since the outbreak of protests in 2011 against President Bashar Assad's regime, and long before, one group of Syrians, the Kurdish community, has consistently sought peaceful change and respect for the rights of all. For Syria's Kurds, the struggle against more than four decades of the Assad family's Baathist dictatorship became particularly harsh after 2004, when security forces killed dozens of unarmed protesters in the northeastern town of Qamishli. When protests erupted across Syria in 2011, the Kurds were at the forefront of the movement. Unfortunately, foreign fighters across the Arab and wider Muslim world soon joined the fray, some supporting the Assad regime, and others backing the rebels. This is the case for people of all ethnic or religious communities in the Kurdish regions.Syria's Kurds are ready to build a more democratic country.
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