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US to Retrieve PKK/YPG Weapons That Threaten Turkey

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Nonthreatening equipment such as bulldozers, humvees, IED diggers would stay, Pentagon says.

The U.S. will recoup every weapon that could threaten Turkey from the PKK/YPG, the Pentagon said Thursday.

"Categorically, we will collect any arms that would threaten our ally Turkey. Turks have the inventory of those,” Pentagon spokesman Eric Pahon told Anadolu Agency.

The PYD and its military wing YPG are Syrian branches of the PKK terrorist network which has waged war against Turkey for more than 30 years and taken thousands of lives.

However, Pahon did not reveal the exact details on the inventory and number of weapons, saying he has no authority to do so.

The PKK is listed as a terrorist organization in Turkey, the U.S. and the EU. In its over three-decade terror campaign against Turkey, more than 40,000 people have been killed.

Since the group resumed its armed campaign in July 2015, more than 1,200 people, including security force personnel and civilians, have lost their lives.

Responding to a question on whether the U.S. would collect other equipment such as bulldozers, Humvees, IED diggers, mines and hand-made explosives, Pahon said those which do not pose a danger would not be retrieved.

"They are not combat equipment, he added. "We are talking about weapons.”

In addition, Pahon noted that, along with MRAP-type armored vehicles, the U.S. would also collect machine guns, rocket launchers and other weapons that have the ability to counter armored IED-borne vehicles.

According to a Pentagon budget report obtained in early June by Anadolu Agency, the U.S. military provides weapons to the PKK/YPG.

They include 12,000 Kalashnikovs, 6,000 machine guns, 3,500 heavy machine guns, 3,000 U.S. made RPG-7s and 1,000 U.S. made AT-4 or Russian made SPG-9 anti-tank munitions.

Since then, the U.S. has continuously armed the PKK/YPG, which has been heavily criticized by Turkey.

'Türkiye'yi tehdit edebilecek silahları toplayacağız'


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