Tue Jan 31, 2017 05:21PM
Members of the US-backed so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) gather after a training session at a firing range in northern Syria on May 21, 2016. (Photo by AP)
Members of the US-backed so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) gather after a training session at a firing range in northern Syria on May 21, 2016. (Photo by AP)

The US has provided a Syria militant group with armored vehicles in defiance of warnings that the equipment may end up in the hands of Takfiri militants waging a campaign of death in the Arab country.

The so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), a multi-ethnic anti-government alliance, said on Tuesday that the contingent had arrived in the Arab country without elaborating on the exact number of the armored vehicles.

"American armored vehicles have arrived for the Syrian Democratic Forces for the first time. This happened after the new US administration came to power," said SDF spokesman, Talal Sello.

The administration of US President Donald Trump has taken the decision to supply the SDF with the vehicles, Sello said, adding, "Before we used to receive light weapons, ammunition.... With these armored vehicles we've entered a new phase in the [US] support. It's a sign."

The official further noted that the SDF had held meetings with representatives of the new US government, “who had promised … extra support" for the militant group.

Members of the US-backed Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), hold a position in a field near the village of al-Naseem, near Raqqah, Syria, December 12, 2016. (Photo by AFP)

Washington confirms sending armed vehicles to Syria opposition

Meanwhile, Washington confirmed that it had for the first time supplied armored Sport Utility Vehicles (SUVs) to the SDF’s Arab component, known as the Syrian Arab Coalition.

"The decision was made by military commanders and has been in the works for some time," said US military spokesman, Colonel John Dorrian.

Founded in October 2015, the US-backed SDF is comprised mostly of Syrian Kurds, numbering at least 25,000.

Washington has been sponsoring anti-Damascus groups operating in Syria by labeling them as moderate militants.

Earlier this month, General Carlton Everhart, a commander of the Air Mobility Command, said that the US Air Force was increasing airdrops of weapons, ammunition and other equipment to militant groups closing in on the Daesh-held Syrian city of Raqqah.

According to reports, weapons and ammunition supplied to the so-called moderate opposition groups in Syria have frequently fell into the hands of Takfiri terrorist groups such as Daesh and Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, an affiliate of al-Qaeda formerly known as al-Nusra Front.

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In December 2016, the then US president, Barack Obama, waived prohibitions in the US Arms Export Control Act, allowing the country to arm Syria militant groups.

The Kremlin denounced the move as risky and warned that the US weapons might end up in the hands of terrorists.

Washington, itself, admitted that it could not guarantee that the weapons it sends to militants in Syria will not end up in the hands of Daesh terrorist group.

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