Pentagon: US might cut off arms support to SDF if deal is violated
Cansu Çamlıbel – WASHINGTON
Washington might cut off arms support to the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which is dominated by the People’s Protection Units (YPG), if it observes that the group violates its agreement with the U.S. and uses them for any other purpose than fighting the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), according to the Pentagon.
“We have always been clear with Turkey that the weapons provided to the SDF, to include its Kurdish elements, would be limited, mission-specific and provided incrementally to achieve military objectives,” the Pentagon’s spokesperson Eric Pahon told daily Hürriyet on Jan. 24.
“Consistent with that policy, we are reviewing pending adjustments the military support provided to our Kurdish partners in as much as the military requirements of our defeat-ISIS and stabilization efforts will allow to prevent ISIS from returning,” he said, using another acronym for ISIL.
“We do not condone the use of coalition-provided weapons and equipment for any purpose other than to defeat ISIS. If we identify any group or individuals violating their agreement, we will investigate and, if appropriate, cut off equipment support,” he said.
“The United States remains committed to protecting our NATO ally Turkey, including supporting efforts to counter threats from the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party [PKK],” he said, while adding that the U.S. will continue cooperating with the SDF against ISIL.