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While the destruction caused by the Syrian Civil War has cost some 100,000 lives, Syria’s Kurds now find themselves filling the vacuum left behind by the Assad regime’s withdrawal from their region in the northeast. Here a new civil society is slowly but constantly taking form as these Kurds begin to develop an autonomous political and cultural agenda. Thus far, the Kurds had managed not to get embroiled in a war, in which the confusion of a constantly shifting strategic landscape has paradoxically created the greatest opportunity to establish a defacto autonomy in the Kurdish areas.

Obliquely caught between both rebels and the regime, the Kurds are becoming a discreet symbol of resistance, identity and a renewed civil society in the Middle East.

It’s imposible to further understand both recent and future changes in the entire region without paying attention to this under-reported and volatile historical process. This reportage explores this new and unprecedented frontier of the Arab Spring.

The Kurdish Winter by Guillem Valle  
The Kurdish Winter by Guillem Valle