Dec 23 2017

Trump approves arms support to Syrian Kurds, after promising Turkey not to

U.S. President Donald Trump has approved a $393.3 million military support to Syrian armed opposition in 2018, after he ensured Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan in November that U.S. will cease backing the Kurdish militia.

The list of heavy weaponry, including anti-tank, anti-aircraft and mortar weapons, was prepared by U.S. Department of Defence as part of the 2018 defence budget and signed by Trump of Dec. 12, Turkish newspaper reported.

The budget does not refer to Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which the YPG constitutes the majority, but instead says “Vetted Syrian Opposition (VSO),” Turkish press wrote.

“The list of weapons that Pentagon plans to deliver to SDF is provided in the annex of Pentagon's 2018 budget that Trump signed last week,” local press said.

Turkish media has earlier reported a Nov. 24 phone call between Trump and Erdoğan where the U.S. administration have said the Syrian Kurdish militia, People’s Protection Units (YPG), ‘will no longer receive U.S. weapons.’

The Pentagon spokesman later has said they are “reviewing pending adjustments to the military support provided to our Kurdish partners” Ahval reported.