World Bulletin / News Desk
“We carefully monitor where that ammunition goes,” Pentagon spokesman Peter Cook told reporters, referring to shipments to the Syrian Arab Coalition, which is part of the U.S.-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF).
“If people are not abiding by the agreements they have reached with us, then they're not going to get our equipment, and that's something we've made clear from the start and that's something we'll continue to push and demand of our partners on the ground,” he added.
Ankara considers the PYD and its armed wing, the YPG, to be the Syrian offshoots of the PKK extrem group, which has for decade waged war against Turkey. The U.S. similarly designates the PKK, but not the YPG.
Washington has provided the SDF with significant military assistance, including special forces advisors and airstrikes, in its anti-ISIL fight.
U.S. efforts to address the concerns of its coalition members and its partners are “above and beyond what we've been doing previously, given the sensitivity of this situation and the importance, once again, of keeping everyone focused on what matters most, and that is keeping the pressure on ISIL,” Cook said.
He reiterated Washington’s claims that the SDF has “honored its commitments” to transit east of the Euphrates River, but said “local forces” – a reference to Arab and Turkomen fighters – are still in Manbij for clearing operations.
The SDF wrested control of the city, which was a major ISIL transit route, from the extrem group after two and a half months of intense fighting.