A gang, allegedly linked to the Syria-based Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), carries out arms supplies and human trafficking between Azaz and Afrin cities in northern Syria with assistance rendered by US relief foundations, Turkish media reported on Monday.
According to the Yeni Safak newspaper, the gang is alleged to have close ties with the US humanitarian relief organizations, such as Mercy Corps, International Medical Corps and Medical Relief and uses its trucks for carrying weapons and smuggling.
The sum of the gang’s daily earnings reportedly totals to around $400,000, including an additional daily income of between $80,000 and $100,000 from the illegal organ trade, weapons business and smuggling. All these illegal activities had been conducted in the guise of US relief foundations’ aid supply, the newspaper said, citing sources from the border.
Ankara considers the Syria-based Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) and its armed wing, the People’s Protection Units (YPG), to be extensions of the nationalist Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which is designated as a terrorist group in Turkey.