US air drops arms and ammunitions to anti Asad rebels in Syria
DAMASCUS: U.S. forces have carried out an air drop of small arms ammunition to Syrian Arab rebels in northern Syria. Russia has targeted Syrian rebel groups backed by the Central Intelligence Agency in a string of air strikes running for days, leading the U.S. to conclude that it is an intentional effort by Moscow. The United States and its Arab allies have conducted more than 135 airstrikes in and around Kobani in the past two weeks to help slow the advance of hundreds of Islamic State fighters on the town along the Turkish border. A U.S. military official, speaking on condition of anonymity, said on Monday the air drop of supplies to the opposition fighters on Sunday was part of a revamped U.S. strategy announced last week to help rebels in Syria battling Islamic State ISIS militants. Last week, Washington shelved a program to train and equip "moderate" rebels opposed to Assad who would join the fight against Islamic State. This time, the official said Syrian Kurds were not recipients of the U.S airdrop. Only Syrian Arabs fighting ISIS. There is sensitivity in Washington over arming Syrian Kurds, whom Turkey sees as an enemy but the U.S counts as a NOTO ally. The 500 Tons of Supplies were airdropped into Al-Hasakah Province, home to Syrian Kurds, Arabs and minority Syrian community. The ammunition originally was intended for the U.S military train and equip mission, the official said.