Executive Intelligence Review


U.S.-Backed Syrian Kurdish Leaders Preparing for Talks with Damascus Government

July 17, 2018 (EIRNS)—The breaking news out of Syria is that the political arm of the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), called the Syrian Democratic Council (SDC), has stated that it is ready for negotiations with the government in Damascus, but only under certain conditions, following a congress it held in Taqba. The SDC is working to create a negotiating team for possible talks with the Assad government, key SDC figure Hekmat Habib told AFP. “One of the meeting’s aims is to create a platform to negotiate with the Syrian regime,” Habib said. “This platform will represent all areas in the autonomous administration and all areas held by the SDF.”

The Kurdish leadership had downplayed earlier reports by the Arabic Saudi-based daily Al Watan of discussions between the government and the Kurds in the border town of Qamishli as not accurate.

The SDC also is working to create a unified administration for the entirety of areas it controls, including the Arab-populated areas of Raqqa, Deir Ezzor and the eastern Jazeera region. “This is an administration to coordinate among the areas because there are gaps ... to secure needs in all areas,” Ilham Ahmed, SDC co-chair and a top Syrian Kurdish politician, told Reuters. Ahmed said the initiative was still in the early phases and the goal was to include all SDF territory. “It will have a benefit when it comes to ensuring security and stability,” she said. The new, “organized entity (will) practice a form of governance, ... draw up practical policies for people’s lives, and provide services,” said Riad Darar, the second SDC co-chair.