U.S. suspends non-lethal assistance to northern Syria
Wednesday, December 11, 2013 - 01:15
Dec. 11 - The White House confirmed that the U.S. has suspended all further deliveries of non-lethal assistance into northern Syria. Deborah Lutterbeck reports.
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The U.S. confirms Wednesday that it has suspended all further deliveries of non-lethal assistance into northern Syria.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest said the administration is concerned about reports that U.S. contributions are ending up in the hands of Islamist fighters.
(SOUNDBITE) (English) WHITE HOUSE SPOKESMAN JOSH EARNEST , SAYING:
"The United States has suspended all further deliveries of non-lethal assistance into northern Syria. At the same time it is important for people to understand that our humanitarian assistance which is distributed th=rough international and non governmental organizations including the United Nations is not affected by this suspension."
Britain joined the U.S. in the suspension.
The rebel Free Syrian Army said the moves were rushed and mistaken. A spokesman said "We hope our friends will rethink and wait for a few days when things will be clearer."
The suspension underlines a crisis for the Free Syrian Army leadership, which needs international backing to reinforce its credibility and to stop its fighters joining al Qaeda-backed Islamist militants who now dominate the war with President Bashar - al Assad.
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