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Kerry: U.S. told Turkey arms drop to Syrian Kurds 'momentary' response to crisis
October 20, 2014 / 11:17 AM / 3 years ago

Kerry: U.S. told Turkey arms drop to Syrian Kurds 'momentary' response to crisis

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States told Turkey that a U.S. military air-drop of arms to Syrian Kurds battling Islamic State near the Syrian town of Kobani was a response to a crisis situation and did not represent a change in U.S. policy, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said on Monday.

A Turkish army tank drives near the Mursitpinar crossing on the Turkish-Syrian border as smoke rises in the background from the Syrian town of Kobani, October 20, 2014. REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

“We talked with Turkish authorities - I did, the president did, to make it very very clear that this is not a shift in policy by the United States. It is crisis moment, an emergency,” Kerry told reporters on a visit to Indonesia, adding that it was a “momentary effort.”

The Turkish government, which views Syrian Kurds with deep suspicion because of their ties to the PKK - a group that waged a decades-long militant campaign for Kurdish rights in Turkey - has turned down requests for it to open a land corridor so Kobani could be resupplied from other Kurdish areas of northern Syria.

Reporting by David Brunnstrom Editing by W Simon

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