Baghdad (IraqiNews.com) The leadership of Iraqi Kurdistan forces, Peshmerga, said Wednesday the service received U.S. assurances of continued military assistance, with USD364 million in financial aid on the way.
Kurdish network Rudaw quoted Bradley Becker, commander of Iraq security cooperation at the U.S. Central Command, saying that the United States will continue to arm Peshmerga forces, adding that the U.S. Congress decided to grant Peshmerga ministry US364 million for 2018.
Becker’s remarks, according to Rudaw, cam during a meeting with Acting Peshmerga Minister, Karim Sinjari, in Kurdistan Region’s capital, Erbil.
Sinjari, on his behalf, lauded the U.S. support, asking for international coalition forces to proceed with the training of Peshmerga troops.
Kurdish politicians and Peshmerga leaders had criticized U.S. inaction towards Iraqi forces’ invasion of areas disputed by Iraq and Kurdistan Region in mid October, lamenting the use of U.S. weaponry by the Iraqi government troops during the invasion.
Iraqi forces took over oil facilities and government offices in Kirkuk and other disputed territories in response to a Kurdish referendum in September in which a vast majority of Kurds voted for independence from Iraq. Baghdad deems the vote unconstitutional.
Kurdish PM Nechirvan Barzani declared earlier on Wednesday the end of a training and armament program the U.S.-led coalition has provided to Peshmerga, noting that a new memorandum of understanding would be sought to maintain the program.