(Rudaw) A US spokesman for the international coalition to defeat ISIS [Islamic State of Iraq and Syria] has warned that it would reduce support if the arms it has supplied in the example of Kurds for Raqqa are not used properly.
“And any misuse that does not go towards fighting ISIS or is found used elsewhere, could potentially curtail any further support on what we may give to them in the future,” Col. Ryan Dillon told reporters via teleconference from Baghdad on Thursday.
“We will have advisors as well that are going to be with our SDF [Syrian Democratic Forces] elements. And as much as they can, they will be with them as they are advising them in the seizure of Raqqah. “
Dillon was repeatedly queried on Turkish concerns of the US supplying heavier arms to Kurdish elements of the coalition’s partnered ground forces.
Many Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) comprise the SDF in Syria, and Ankara worries that the weapons could be used by the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in its three-decade-long guerrilla insurgency with the Turkish government.
“We are maintaining full accountability of the weapons that we were providing the SDF and we are being transparent with Turkey on the details of what we are providing,” he said.
Dillon, who has previously said weapons will be metered out to partner forces in an as-needed basis, noted the risks in broadcasting the weapons capabilities of partnered ground forces.
“We’re not going to get into the serial number items and the amount of the small arms and ammunition and the types of guns and vehicles that we’re providing,” he said. “We don’t want ISIS to know what it is that the — our Syrian Democratic Forces have. But we’re just not going to go into that kind of detail.”