U.S. Hails Peshmerga-ISF Coordination in Combatting ISIS
WASHINGTON DC, United States (Kurdistan 24) – Pentagon Press Secretary Brig. Gen. Pat Ryder expressed high praise for the cooperation between the Kurdish Peshmerga and the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) in their shared battle against ISIS in a press briefing on Thursday.
“One of the key aspects of success in the Defeat-ISIS mission has been the collaboration between the ISF and Peshmerga forces in northern Iraq by working together against a common enemy,” Ryder said, as he responded to a question from Kurdistan 24.
“That is something that I think has benefitted not only Iraq,” he continued, “but the entire region.”
U.S. Sends Iranian Arms Intended for Houthis to Ukraine
Ryder also confirmed information released by CENTCOM on Wednesday, as it announced that it had shipped Iranian ammunition to Ukraine. CENTCOM had seized the munitions, while they were being transferred from Iran to the Houthis in Yemen.
On Oct. 2, as CENTCOM said, the U.S. “transferred approximately 1.1 million 7.62 mm rounds to the Ukrainian armed forces.”
“The government obtained ownership of these munitions through the Department of Justice’s civil forfeiture claims against Iran’s Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps (IRGC),” CENTCOM’s statement continued.
It explained how CENTCOM came into possession of those arms, and the description provides some insight into the IRGC’s operations.
On Dec. 9, 2022, CENTCOM naval forces spotted a dhow, a traditional sailing vessel, the Marwan-1, which was sailing across the Gulf, without flying the flag of any country.
As CENTCOM’s naval forces stopped and boarded the dhow, they discovered and seized the munitions, which “were being transferred from the IRGC to the Houthis in Yemen in violation of the United Nations Security Council Resolution 2216,” CENTCOM’s statement explained.
“The U.S. is committed to working with our allies and partners to counter the flow of Iranian lethal aid in the region by all lawful means including U.S. and U.N. sanctions and through interdictions,” it continued.
“Iran’s support for armed groups threatens international and regional security, our forces, diplomatic personnel, and citizens in the region, as well as those of our partners,” CENTCOM said, as it affirmed, “We will continue to do whatever we can to shed light on and stop Iran’s destabilizing activities.”
The U.S. shipment of the Iranian ammunition to Ukraine is particularly ironic, as Ukraine has suffered greatly from Iran’s provision of explosive drones to Russia. As the Kyiv Post, a major Ukrainian media outlet, noted, “Iran is one of Russia’s staunchest allies and its main international weapons supplier.”
“Most notably, the kamikaze drones that regularly attack Ukrainian cities are currently manufactured in Iranian factories before being shipped to Moscow’s forces,” the Post continued, as it reported, with some satisfaction on the U.S. transfer of the Iranian ammunition.