BEIRUT, LEBANON (8:30 P.M.) – Reports have been circulating for well over one week now that either the Damascus government or Iran or both are providing military support to Kurdish forces currently battling it out against the Turkish Army and militias allied to it in Afrin.
The reports have been spread by both pro-government and opposition sources. Kurdish sources appear to be completely quiet on the matter (perhaps for obvious reasons).
In any case, reports argue that Iran is either directly providing weapons to Kurdish paramilitary groups or is providing weapons via Damascus-controlled logistical channels to Kurdish paramilitary groups.
The reports point out the sudden appearance of Iranian-built Toophan anti-tank missile systems in the hands of Kurdish forces as well as 107-mm artillery rockets which are characteristically used by Iranian (proper) and Iranian-backed forces.
Some reports have gone so far to say that man-portable surface-to-air missile systems have been provided by Iran and the Syrian government to Kurdish forces, but these are major accusation which require considerable evidence.
One thing that can be confirmed is that Damascus is allowing Kurdish forces in east Syria to transit through its territory to reach Afrin.