By S. Ahmet Aytac and Mert Bezgin
Castle International LLC., a U.S.-based private security and defense contractor, has been supporting the terrorist group YPG/PKK in northern Syria.
The private firm, under the name Special Projects Group, has been active in Africa and the Middle East. It also operates in Syria and Iraq.
“Castle International employs ‘well-trained and silent’ professionals and provides services for clients under risky circumstances,” the contractor says on its website.
Pictures with YPG terrorists
On its official website and social media accounts, the firm shares documents and photographs showing that their personnel is working with YPG/PKK in northern Syria.
The webpage also includes a contract made with the terror group.
The contract reads: “We, People’s Protection Units (YPG) of Rojava, Syria, wish to engage with Castle International LLC of Arizona, USA, for the purpose of a long-term contractual agreement in the services of combat medical support and logistics subject matter expertise.”
The contract is signed by YPG’s Redur Xelil and Naser Hajimansur, and Dan Chirkoff, Ram A. Patten and Michal Qarajouli from Castle International.
Several photographs show members of the terror group side by side with the firm’s personnel in military fatigues.
Firm’s personnel have reportedly visited Syria last in September 2017 and then moved to Iraq. After 2017, the firm ceased to share photographs of their activities on social media.
An insurance certificate dated 2016 on the website reveals that the Castle International LLC is based in Scottsdale, Arizona.
The U.S. State Department omitted the PYD/YPG terrorist group from its 2017 Country Reports on Terrorism, released on Wednesday.
The previous edition of the report noted that Turkey views the Syria-based PYD/YPG as an extension of the PKK militant group.
In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK — listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU — has been responsible for the deaths of nearly 40,000 people, including women and children.
On Jan. 20, Turkey launched Operation Olive Branch to remove YPG/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Syria’s Afrin. On March 18, Turkish troops and the Free Syrian Army liberated the Afrin district center.