SDF seeks U.S. mediation for stability in northeast Syria

The Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), the Kurdish-led militia that played a decisive role in the territorial defeat of the Islamic State (ISIS), is seeking U.S. support for stability in northeast Syria, International Crisis Group (ICG), an independent conflict-prevention organisation, said on Wednesday.

Turkey sees the SDF as an existential threat due to its links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and has launched four major military offensives against the group, which controls enclaves in northeast Syria along the Turkish border.

"The SDF is clearly seeking U.S. mediation to reach a détente with Ankara," the ICG said.

"We understand that beyond rhetoric, U.S.-Turkey relations are strategic," the ICG cited SDF commander Mazloum Kobani as saying. 

"Our position remains the same: we are open to any understanding with Turkey on security and beyond, despite Turkish aggression against us. And we want the U.S. to be the mediator and guarantor of that," Kobani said.

Occasional clashes continue in northern Syria in the aftermath of Turkey’s military incursions, and Turkish forces and their Syrian allied groups have been accused of violating the ceasefiretargeting civilians and committing war crimes.

https://www.crisisgroup.org/middle-east-north-africa/eastern-mediterranean/syria/sdf-seeks-path-toward-durable-stability-north-east-syria