Kurdish Report: US Building Two Air Bases in Northeast Syria

Rmelian Airfield Nearly Completed, Second Started Near Kobani

New reports from the Kurdish media in Syria suggest the US is expanding its operations inside northeast Syria, and is now working on two separate air bases inside territory controlled by the Kurdish YPG.

A US project to expand the Rmelian Airfield was initially reported back in January, and the new report suggested that the Rmelian project is almost finished. The second project is at an as-yet-undisclosed site near the Kurdish city of Kobani.

US Central Command issued a statement “denying” that the US had any direct control over any airfields in Syria, though they did not actually deny that the projects themselves were ongoing, saying they are looking to increase “efficiency for logistics” in Syrian Kurdistan.

The Kurdish reports suggested that the US is already actively using the Rmelian field for flights of military helicopters. Even after expansion, the base is not expected to be big enough for most warplanes, but could accept arms deliveries as well as flights to deliver troops to the area.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.