On November 1, 200 locals from the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF)-held Manbij city in the northern Aleppo countryside signed a reconciliation agreement with the Syrian authorities according to the Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA).
SANA said that the locals entered the Syrian government areas through the al-Tayha crossing coming from the SDF-held areas in the northern Aleppo countryside. SANA added that the reconciliation agreement will allow the locals to return to their properties and move freely in the government areas.
Back on 27 August 2016, the SDF captured Manbij city after allowing hundreds of ISIS fighters to withdraw from the city. The SDF then handed over the city to the Manbij Military Council (MMC).
However, unlike the SDF, the MMC got excellent relations with the Syrian government. The MMC even deployed a joint force with the SAA west of Manbij city after Turkey captured al-Bab city.
SANA reported that since 2016, more than 550 locals from Manbij city have signed reconciliation agreements with the Syrian authorities. Many of the locals who signed the agreement were former Free Syrian Army (FSA) or (SDF) fighters, according to Syrian pro-government sources.
Most Arabs in the SDF-held areas will likely sign similar agreements with the Syrian government once ISIS is defeated. This will place a huge pressure on the US-backed SDF that’s depending on the few Arabs in its areas, and the Arab refugees to present itself as a Syrian multi-ethnic force.