BERLIN , Sept. 1 (UPI) -- Germany announced as substantial delivery of armaments to Kurdish soldiers fighting the Islamic State.
"The weapons delivery is enough to supply a brigade of 4,000 soldiers," German defense minister Ursula von der Leyen said Sunday, adding the international community had to "support the persecuted" because IS militants were acting with "merciless brutality."
The equipment will be delivered by the end of September and includes anti-tank missiles, assault rifles, pistols and portable anti-tank rocket launchers. The announcement came after German leaders, led by Chancellor Angela Merkel, discussed what they termed the "extremely critical" situation in Iraq.
Hans-Georg Maassen, director of Germany's Federal Office for the Protection of the Constitution, spoke Sunday of an "increased abstract threat" of attack, noting extremists have left Germany to fight in the Middle East and could return home.
"We have to assume ... that there may well be people who return and commit attacks," Massen said in a radio interview, adding about 400 Germans are currently involved in the fight and at least 25 have returned to Germany.