U.S. diplomats visited Syrian Kurdish movement before Turkey’s Afrin operation – Anadolu Agency

A delegation from the U.S. Department of State on Friday met with leaders of Syrian Kurds, a day before Turkish army started shelling Kurdish-held positions in northwestern province of Afrin, Turkey’s state-run news agency Anadolu reported.

The delegation, headed by diplomat Max Martin, met with members of the Raqqah provincial council, and with the Movement for a Democratic Society (TEV-DEM) members Aldar Xelil, Fevze Yusuf and Bedran Ciya Kurd, agency said.

Raqqah provincial council is a civilian interim administration responsible for the rebuilding of the city.

TEV-DEM, a coalition of Syrian Kurdish political parties led by Democratic Union Party (PYD), is the de facto governing power in the autonomous areas in northern Syria.

Kurdish leaders briefed the U.S. officials about their demands for a federal system in Syria, agency wrote.

The delegation also visited the northern province of Kobani and met with Sahin Cilo, the commander of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) that is largely composed of and led by the Kurdish militia, Anadolu said.