Former general: PYD could use Assad's chemical weapons against civilians

DAILY SABAH
ISTANBUL
Published 30.08.2016 22:59
Updated 05.09.2016 11:52

A defected army general for the chemical weapons' branch of the Syrian army said Bashar Assad has given chemical weapons to the PKK's Syrian affiliate Democratic Union Party (PYD) and suggested that the PYD might use these weapons against Turkey.

According to a report by Yeni Şafak daily, Zahir al-Sakit, a commander in the Aleppo military council, stated that the PYD has considerable amounts of chemical weapons and warned that those weapons could be used against civilians in order to shift the blame on Turkey.

"DAESH seized many points in the city of Hasakah in June 2015. Then, the regime in Damascus gave the chemical weapons it had preserved in Hasakah to the PYD. Later on, the regime continued to distribute these weapons from chemical depots located in the town of al-Sukhna in rural Tadmur province to the PYD. Three deliveries were made in various ways," he said.

Commander al-Sakit also said that the PYD might use the previously delivered chemicals around the city of Manbij, adding: "However, the point here is that there is a risk that the PYD's likely use of those chemicals in and around Manbij could be attributed to Turkey and the possibility that propaganda will be made based on this issue must be taken into consideration."

A recent investigation by the U.S. established that Assad's forces carried out at least two chemical attacks in Syria and that DAESH terrorists used mustard gas as a chemical weapon.

The Syrian Network for Human Rights (SNHR) also said Monday that it has documented 139 chemical attacks in Syria since September 2013 when the U.N. Security Council issued Resolution No. 2118 for the dismantling of Syria's chemical weapons arsenal.

The PYD's armed wing, the People's Protection Units (YPG) appears to be reinforcing the Syrian city of Manbij with trucks and minibuses loaded with weapons, equipment and personnel moving westward in northern Syria, leading them to believe that the YPG was reinforcing Manbij.

Operations led by Turkey-backed FSA forces revealed that YPG terrorists forced civilians in villages located west of the Euphrates River to take shelter in buildings surrounded with gun-loaded vehicles in order to use them as human shields in offensives. In accordance with the plan, the PKK-linked group aims to conduct a smear campaign against Turkey by raising these fabricated allegations to manipulate the international community's perception of Turkey's presence in Syria.

Local sources also indicated that the YPG plans to kill the civilians used in the abductions and spread false reports that those civilians were killed by the Turkish army and Turkey-backed FSA forces.

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