Kurds battling the Islamic State jihadist group in Kobane reportedly made advances Tuesday in the south of the flashpoint Syrian town on the border with Turkey.
Kurds battling the Islamic State jihadist group in Kobane were making advances in the flashpoint Syrian town on the border with Turkey, local officials and a monitor said.
Top Kurdish officials told AFP their fighters were advancing “street by street” and voiced confidence that IS would soon be ejected from the town.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a Britain-based monitoring group, said the latest advances were mainly in the south of the besieged town.
“The (Kurdish) People’s Protection Units (YPG) recaptured streets and buildings in the south of Kobane, after a fierce battle against IS that began yesterday (Monday) evening,” the Observatory said.
The monitor also said the YPG and its Iraqi peshmerga allies shelled IS positions on Tuesday elsewhere in Kobane.
Kobane has been under siege from IS since mid-September and more than 1,000 people have been killed in the fighting, most of them jihadists.
Syria’s Kurds have been backed by Iraqi peshmerga fighters and Syrian rebels in their fight for the town, as well as a wave of air strikes by the US-led coalition against IS.
Syrian Kurdish chief Saleh Muslim said YPG forces were advancing “street by street” and that they would “recapture the town in a very short time”.
The Kurds’ top field commander in Kobane, Narin Afrin, a 40-year-old woman, said by telephone: “We have been resisting for 56 days in very difficult conditions.”
“We will liberate the town house by house, and we are determined to exterminate terrorism and fundamentalism,” she said.
Kobane has become a symbol of resistance against jihadists who control swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq, committing brutal abuses against rivals and the local population.