Pentagon confirms airdrop to Syrian forces fighting ISIL

The Pentagon has confirmed an airdrop saying that the ‘delivery includes small arms ammunition to resupply the local forces,’

Pentagon confirms airdrop to Syrian forces fighting ISIL

World Bulletin / News Desk

The Pentagon confirmed Monday that U.S.-led coalition forces conducted an airdrop to anti-ISIL ground forces fighting the militants in northern Syria. 

"The aircraft delivery includes small arms ammunition to resupply the local forces" to enable them to continue operations against ISIL, Pentagon spokeswoman Elissa Smith told Anadolu Agency. 

Smith said the "successful" airdrop was conducted by a "U.S. Air Force C-17 cargo aircraft flying from the U.S. Central Command area of responsibility" and added that all aircraft exited the drop area safely.  

The U.S. announced last week that it would "pause" its $500 million train and equip program for Syrian rebels but instead provide weapons and equipment packages to a select rebel group of vetted leaders and their units fighting ISIL in Syria. 

"This focus on equipping and enabling will allow us to reinforce the progress already made in countering ISIL in Syria," said Smith.   

Smith declined to provide details about which rebel groups received the supplies, the location of the groups or the equipment supplied.   

Meanwhile, a spokesman for the YPG – the armed wing of the Democratic Union Party [PYD] said Sunday via Twitter that "a unified national military force" had been established to defeat ISIL.

The PYD is a Syrian-based affiliate of the PKK –considered a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU.

Polat Can said the united force consisted of four groups: Kurds, Arabs, Assyrians and other groups in northern Syria. 

All of the groups - the Syrian Arab Coalition [SAC]; Assyrian Military Council; the YPG and the YPJ – which is the female wing of the YPG - were unified under the banner of the Syrian Democratic Forces, which claims to have pushed back ISIL from northern Syria but it is unclear however, who the group is really fighting.  

The Arab groups in the new alliance are operating under the name "The Syrian Arab Coalition." The Assyrian Military Council consists of Assyrian Christians. 

The YPG's statement, which came days after the U.S. said it would stop the train and equip program, raises questions about whether the newly unified group is amongst the groups the U.S. backs in the fight against ISIL.

Last Mod: 13 Ekim 2015, 09:02
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