The Pentagon this week declared that 40 percent of Raqqa in Syria has been liberated. Bashar Assad’s forces are miles away from Abu Kamal, and it seems that in eight to 12 months eastern Syria will be cleared of Daesh. So what is next for the United States in Syria, especially with regard to the People’s Protection Units (YPG)?
The “Syrian National Coalition” asked on Wednesday that the UN Security Council lists the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (YPD) and its US-backed military wing, the People’s Protection Units (YPG) as terrorist organizations.
The Russian announcement of the de-escalation zones in Syria is moving at an accelerating pace, with the statement about two new areas in two weeks. Moscow announced de-escalation zones in the southwest of Syria, including the provinces of Suwayda, Daraa and Quneitra.
China’s special envoy for Syria, Xie Xiaoyan, said the Astana and Geneva peace talks on the settlement of the Syrian crisis are “mutually supportive”, noting that a new round of the UN-mediated talks is expected to be held in the Swiss city in August.
Russia has sent military reinforcements to eastern Ghouta near Damascus and southwest Syria to support the de-escalation zones in order to enforce the Syrian military’s declaration of a ceasefire on Saturday.
After a successful demarcating the safe zone in Eastern Ghouta by Russia’s military and Syria’s rebel groups near Damascus, a joint checkpoint manned by Russian and Syrian military personnel has opened there.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov says that Russia and the Kurds of Iraq have strong historical ties that go back decades and that Moscow makes sure its ties with Iraqi Kurdistan do not have a negative impact on anyone else, particularly the Iraqi central government.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Friday he expected to finish work with the United States on resolving issues with the operation of the southern Syria de-escalation zone soon.
According to the reports, the United States and Russia may announce a second ceasefire deal on Syria, covering Homs and Eastern Ghouta, around mid-August after expert Russia-US consultations in one of the European capitals.