Kurds Want Russia's Help in Fight Against ISIL, Nusra Front

© AP Photo / Vadim GhirdaKurds pray during a religious service
Kurds pray during a religious service - Sputnik International
Russia can help Kurds battling Islamic State and other terrorist groups, including the Nusra Front, General Commander of the People’s Protection Units (YPG) Sipan Hemo told Sputnik Kurdistan Wednesday.

MOSCOW (Sputnik) — The statement follows the Russian launch of its first airstrikes on ISIL positions in Syria upon Damascus' request.

“We want Russia to provide us air support, as well as weapons in our fight against the ISIL militants," Hemo told Sputnik Kurdistan. "We can organize an effective cooperation with Russia on the issue. Russia should confront not only ISIL, but also the Nusra Front, as no significant difference between these two groups exist. Both are the branches of al-Qaeda and they both should be eliminated.”

On Wednesday, the Russian upper house of parliament unanimously approved President Vladimir Putin’s request to deploy the Russian Air Force abroad, focusing on anti-ISIL airstrikes in Syria. Putin made his request to the Russian parliament after Syrian President Bashar al-Assad turned to him for assistance.

Apart from the Russian Air Forces, ISIL is being countered by Syrian and Iraqi government forces, Syrian and Iraqi Kurds, and a US-led international coalition.

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