U.S. defies Turkey, to arm Syrian Kurds in fight against ISIS

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The fight to retake Raqqa From the Islamic State will include Kurdish YPG fighters armed with weapons supplied by the United States, much to the chagrin of Turkey, who considers the group an extension of their own insurgents.

The Kurdish PKK group has been fighting against the Turkish government in the country’s southeastern region for over two decades.

“We are keenly aware of the security concerns of our coalition partner Turkey,” Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White said in a statement. “We want to reassure the people and government of Turkey that the U.S. is committed to preventing additional security risks and protecting our NATO ally.”

Turkey’s preference is for the U.S. to back the Syrian rebels that their military has trained and who have fought against ISIS for over a year. Officials in the U.S., however, are not convinced that faction will be enough to get the job done.

The city of Raqqa is considered the capital of Syria to ISIS and it also holds strategic importance.

H/T: Reuters

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