There has been no change in United States support for the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) following the NATO summit, State Department Spokesman Matthew Miller said on Tuesday.
Miller reiterated the US’ commitment to partnership with the Kurdish-led Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) for the ongoing fight against ISIS in Syria.
The statement comes in a press statement amidst questions about Turkey’s opposition to the SDF. Regarding Turkey’s position, Miller dismissed suggestions that the country had attempted to weaken US support for the SDF by leveraging its stance on Sweden’s NATO membership.
“We believe the SDF have been a critical counterterrorism partner, and they remain a critical counterterrorism partner,” Miller affirmed. He emphasised the importance of the Kurdish-led forces in preventing the re-establishment of the Islamic State (ISIS) and acknowledged their significant efforts in liberating vast territories in Syria from the control of the fundamentalist group. “As I said,” Miller concluded, “they will continue to be a partner of ours.”
NATO member Turkey has long opposed Sweden’s accession to NATO, citing Sweden’s alleged support for Kurdish groups, which Turkey deems a threat to national security.
The day before the 11-12 July NATO summit in Lithuania, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan had agreed to accept Sweden’s NATO membership and Sweden reiterated that it would not provide support to Kurdish groups including the People’s Protection Units (YPG), the SDF’s main military force.
The resolution was also welcomed by US President Joe Biden, who expressed gratitude to Erdoğan for his acceptance of Sweden’s NATO membership.