WORLD

Russia says US 'sending Kurds new weapons' across Iraq

RUSSIA SAYS US SENDING KURDS NEW WEAPONS ACROSS IRAQ

Russia on Thursday accused the U.S. of arming Kurds across Iraq.

Speaking at news conference in Moscow, Russian Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zaharova said: "Provoking Turkey, Americans keep sending the Kurds new and new convoys with weapons across the territory of Iraq."

Zaharova added: "Turkey as a result continues to conduct military operations" in Afrin district of northwestern Syria under the framework of Operation Olive Branch.

On Jan. 20, Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch to clear PYD/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Afrin.

According to the Turkish General Staff, the operation aims to establish security and stability along Turkey's borders and the region as well as to protect Syrians from oppression and cruelty of terrorists.

The operation is being carried out under the framework of Turkey's rights based on international law, UN Security Council resolutions, its self-defense rights under the UN charter, and respect for Syria's territorial integrity, it said. Turkish military also said only terror targets were being destroyed and the "utmost care and sensitivity" were being used to not harm civilians.

Zaharova also said the U.S. had "occupied" a 55-kilometer (34-mile) zone in southern Syria near the village of Al Tanf.

"The U.S. continues military occupation of 55-kilometer zone around Al Tanf, that is now, in fact, a security zone for the remnants of Daesh," she said.

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