Kurdish advance forces IS withdrawal from part of Kobani

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Beirut: The Islamic State (IS) Sunni radical group has pulled back its troops from parts of the Syrian Kurdish enclave of Kobani following new advances by Kurdish forces, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights (SOHR) reported.

The jihadis were driven from sectors of a government security complex that they had occupied last October and a vegetable market in the eastern half of the city, which is strategically located on the border with Turkey.

The Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) were said to be advancing cautiously while combing for booby-traps that they fear may have been left behind.

At the same time, the YPG launched an attack late Thursday against IS fighters deployed on the western outskirts of Kobani, while clashes continued Friday around Azadi Square, the London-based rights group said.

The IS has laid a siege around Kobani since Sep 16, but their attempts to overrun the city were slowed by the YPG, which was joined late October by reinforcements from Peshmerga Kurdish forces sent by the autonomous government of Iraqi Kurdistan.

The Kurds are supported by the US-led international coalition, which is carrying out airstrikes on IS-held positions in Syria, as well as in Iraq, where IS also controls large areas of territory.

Kobani, located in the northern Syrian province of Aleppo, is one of the three main Kurdish enclaves in that country.

 

IANS