19:54 GMT26 October 2020
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    The US has transferred weapons to Kurdish fighters as part of aid in an operation to liberate Raqqa, Syria from Daesh, according to some media reports.

    In an interview with Sputnik, the commander of one unit of the Democratic Forces of Syria and a spokesperson for the situational center for the operation to free Raqqa, Cihan Şeyh Ehmed, said that, “Yes, as part of Operation Wrath of Euphrates we have a significant support from the coalition in accordance with the agreement which was concluded between us at the beginning of the operation.”

    So far 200 units of military hardware have been transferred but more are planned to arrive shortly.

    She further said that during the second stage of the operation in Raqqa, help from coalition forces increased.

    “It turned into a multilateral military support. There is help in the form of weapons and soldiers from the coalition, together with our soldiers fighting against Daesh,” the commander told Sputnik Turkey.

    ​Another representative of the Democratic Forces of Syria, who requested to stay anonymous, told Sputnik that the United States regularly supplied the Kurdish forces with arms and military equipment.

    “The United States in the fight against Daesh has constantly provided us with firearms and heavy weapons. In addition, they train our forces in the use of heavy weapons during the course of hostilities. The US supplies us with heat-seeking missiles, mortars, sniper rifles and other weapons, along with vehicles,” the source said.

    He further said that most of the weapons are delivered via aircraft. Sometimes they are delivered to Rojava [Syrian Kurdish region] through the territory of the Iraqi Kurdistan through the Semelka checkpoint.

    “Four days ago we received Hummer vehicles and armored personnel carriers from the United States. These vehicles will be used during the operation in Raqqa. The rocket, mortar and sniper attacks from Daesh can’t do anything to these machines. They are very robust and can withstand even mine blasts,” the source said.

    However, despite the interviews on the ground, US Department of Defense spokesman, Adrian Rankine-Galloway, dismissed these reports in a comment for Sputnik stating that Pentagon only provides training and material support to the Syrian Arab Coalition, which is a component of the SDF.

    Similarly, the reports were denied by the YPG spokesman, Redur Khalil, who said that the Kurdish Popular Defense Units emphasize that “these reports are incorrect as we have not received any weapons from the Alliance.”

    Operation Wrath of Euphrates, aimed at liberating the Syrian city of Raqqa from Daesh was launched by Kurdish-led SDF on November 5, 2016. The SDF started the second stage of the operation on December 10.

    The SDF is among of the forces fighting against Daesh in war-torn Syria and brings together Kurds, Arabs, Assyrians and Turkmens among others.


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    anti-Daesh coalition, liberation, weapons supplies, interview, YPG, Daesh, Syria, Raqqa
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