Top US State Department officials visited North and East Syria on September 20, 2020. Ambassador James Jeffrey, the US Special Representative for Syria Engagement, and Joel Rayburn, Special Envoy for Syria, met with officials of the Autonomous Administration of North and East Syria (AANES) and the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). 

The officials discussed ways that the United States can pressure Turkey to withdraw from North and East Syria, support inclusion of North and East Syria in the UNSCR 2254 talks, UN peace talks on the future of Syria, as well as continued support for the intra-Kurdish dialog. The United States ultimately seeks a dialog between the AANES and the Syrian opposition.

The State Department officials also met with representatives involved in the intra-Kurdish dialog, tribal leaders of the Deir Ez Zor region, and Syrian opposition leaders. 

According to a US State Department press release on the meetings by the US State Department, “the United States will remain closely linked with partners on the ground to coordinate both military and civilian efforts to ensure ISIS does not re-emerge and to achieve a peaceful resolution of the Syrian conflict under UN Security Council Resolution 2254 by working with all Syrians opposed to the Assad regime.”

After meetings in Syria, the US State Department officials met with the Kurdistan Regional Government in Iraq, and then traveled to Berlin, Germany for discussions with German government officials.