By Mark Rivett-Carnac
October 13, 2015

U.S. Air Force C-17 cargo aircraft dropped ammunition in northern Syria on Sunday for rebels fighting the militant group Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria.

Military officials have not yet confirmed what type of ordnance was sent or who exactly received it, according to Reuters.

The supplies landed just days after the U.S. Department of Defense paused its program training moderate Syrian rebels in favor of providing equipment and weapons to “vetted” leaders in the fight against ISIS.

“What has proven effective in the past, particularly in Syria, has been the equipping part of training and equipping,” U.S. State Department spokesperson John Kirby said at a press briefing on Friday.

Washington has indicated that equipment beneficiaries might include Arab groups that cooperate with the Kurdish militia organization YPG, Reuters reported. The U.S.-supported group was recently accused of war crimes in Kurdish-controlled areas by Amnesty International.

While the U.S. pursues a new strategy, Russia has continued air strikes against targets it claims to be terrorists. Most of the bombings, however, have taken place in areas held by opposition factions fighting to overthrow Syrian President and Russian ally, Bashar Assad.

The U.S., NATO and Saudi Arabia have roundly condemned these strikes, warning that bombing would likely escalate the four-year civil war that has killed over 200,000 people and displaced millions throughout the region.

Syria’s Nusra Front, an al-Qaeda affiliate, has also called for retaliation against Russia for its air strikes, Reuters reported.

[Reuters]

Write to Mark Rivett-Carnac at mark.rivett-carnac@timeasia.com.

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