US to halt arms deliveries to Kurdish militants in line with promises to Turkey – Mattis

"We are going to go exactly along the lines of what the president announced," Mattis said
Sunday, 03 December 2017 16:05

The United States will cease weapon supplies to the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) as it was promised earlier to the Turkish leadership, US Defense Secretary James Mattis said amid Ankara's demands to provide documented evidence of cuts.

"We are going to go exactly along the lines of what the president [Donald Trump] announced," Mattis said on Friday, while answering the reporter’s question whether the United States would stop arming the Syrian Kurds.

Ankara has repeatedly expressed hope that the United States will stop supplying Syria's Kurds with weapons. On November 24, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoglu said Trump had reassured his Turkish counterpart that he had ordered to cease supplies of US armaments to the Syrian Kurds. However, the Pentagon later said it was reviewing the need for providing support for YPG units.

Ankara considers the YPG to be affiliated with the armed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), a designated terrorist organization in Turkey, US, EU.