Turkey Concerned over U.S. and Russian Help for Syrian Kurds

The latest American plans to aid Syrian fighters battling the Islamic State hit an obstacle as Turkish officials summoned the American ambassador to express concern that the United States was providing new support to Kurdish militants. Turkey considers the armed kurdish forces as a primary enemy.

But Turkey also summoned the Russian ambassador over concerns that Russia, too, was helping the Kurds.

This could suggest that there is at least one area — supporting Kurdish militias — that both American and Russian interests converge. Or it could be developing into another point of contention, as the two sides compete for the Kurds’ affections, writes New York Times.

It might be that it would add another layer of complexity to the tangled battlefield inside Syria and potentially upend the American relationship with the Kurdish militias, the United States’ most important on-the-ground partner inside Syria in the fight against the Islamic State. The Turks were reacting in part to the United States’ airdropping of 50 tons of ammunition over the weekend to members of an Arab-Kurdish coalition that the United States wants to build up so it can take on the Islamic State in its stronghold in the northern Syrian province of Raqqa.