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Oct 9, 2014

Renewed assault on Kobani; 21 dead in Turkey as Kurds rise

MURSITPINAR Turkey/ANKARA (Reuters) – Islamic State fighters launched a renewed assault on the Syrian city of Kobani on Wednesday night, and at least 21 people were killed in riots in neighbouring Turkey where Kurds rose up against the government for doing nothing to protect their kin.

Heavily outgunned defenders said Islamic State militants had pushed into two districts of the mainly Kurdish border city late on Wednesday, despite U.S.-led air strikes that the Pentagon acknowledged would probably not be enough to safeguard the town.

Oct 8, 2014

Kurds say air strikes push Islamic State back from Kobani

MURSITPINAR Turkey/ANKARA (Reuters) – U.S.-led air strikes on Wednesday pushed Islamic State fighters back to the edges of the Syrian Kurdish border town of Kobani, which they had appeared set to seize after a three-week assault, local officials said.

The town has become the focus of international attention since the Islamists’ advance drove 180,000 of the area’s mostly Kurdish inhabitants to flee into adjoining Turkey, which has infuriated its own restive Kurdish minority — and its NATO partners in Washington — by refusing to intervene.

Oct 8, 2014

Turkey says Syria town about to fall as Islamic State advances

MURSITPINAR Turkey/BEIRUT (Reuters) – Turkey’s president said the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani was “about to fall” on Tuesday as Islamic State fighters pressed home a three-week assault that has cost a reported 400 lives and forced thousands to flee their homes.

The prospect that the town could be captured by Islamic State, who are now within city limits, has increased pressure on Turkey to join an international coalition to fight against the jihadists.

Oct 7, 2014

Islamic State moves into south west of Syrian Kurdish town

MURSITPINAR Turkey/BEIRUT (Reuters) – Islamic State fighters advanced into the south west of the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani overnight, a monitoring group said on Tuesday, taking several buildings to gain attacking positions from two sides of the city.

From across the nearby Turkish border two Islamic State flags could be seen flying over the eastern side of Kobani. Two air strikes hit the area and sporadic gunfire could be heard.

Oct 7, 2014

Street fighting rages in Syrian town as Islamic State moves in

MURSITPINAR Turkey (Reuters) – Street fighting raged between Kurdish defenders and Islamic State militants who advanced into Kobani on Monday after subjecting the Syrian border town to an assault lasting almost three weeks, residents and fighters said.

Islamic State had earlier raised its black flag over a building in the outskirts and forced thousands more of Kobani’s mainly Kurdish inhabitants to flee for their lives across the nearby border into Turkey.

Oct 6, 2014

Islamic State raises flag in eastern Kobani, Kurds say town has not fallen

MURSITPINAR Turkey (Reuters) – Islamic State militants raised their flag on a building on the eastern outskirts of the Syrian border town of Kobani on Monday after an assault of almost three weeks, but the town’s Kurdish defenders said they had not reached the city centre.

A black flag belonging to Islamic State was visible from across the Turkish border atop a four-storey building close to the scene of some of the most intense clashes in recent days.

Oct 6, 2014

Kurds vow to fight to the last as Islamic State tightens grip on Syrian town

MURSITPINAR/BEIRUT (Reuters) – Outgunned Kurdish fighters vowed on Monday not to abandon their increasingly desperate efforts to defend the Syrian border town of Kobani from Islamic State militants pressing in from three sides and pounding them with heavy artillery.

The radical al Qaeda offshoot has been battling for more than two weeks to seize the predominantly Kurdish town, driving 180,000 people into neighboring Turkey.

Oct 5, 2014

Turkish hospital gives glimpse of Syria horror as Islamic State advance

SURUC Turkey (Reuters) – Within minutes of the young woman being carried into the Turkish hospital just over the border from Syria, it became clear that her shattered skull, concealed by bloodied bandages, was too serious for the small state facility to treat.

The unconscious woman in her 20s, whose name was not known, was another victim of the increasingly bloody clashes between Islamic State militants and Kurdish forces for control of the Syrian border town of Kobani, 10 km (six miles) to the south.

Oct 5, 2014

Kurds battle Islamist militants closing in on Syrian town

MURSITPINAR Turkey / BEIRUT (Reuters) – Kurdish forces battled overnight with Islamists trying to seize a hill overlooking a Syrian border town with Turkey as U.S.-led coalition warplanes carried out raids on the militants, a Kurdish official and a monitoring group said on Sunday.

A translator with the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD) inside Kobani said Islamic State forces were hitting it with tank and mortar fire as they tried to seize Mistanour hill, a landmark whose capture would give them easy access to the town.

Sep 26, 2014

Islamic State siege of Syrian town threatens Turkey’s Kurdish peace

MURSITPINAR Turkey (Reuters) – The siege by Islamic State militants of a largely Kurdish Syrian border town has become a rallying point for Turkey’s Kurds, not just against the Sunni insurgents but against the Turkish state, endangering a fragile peace process with Ankara.

Fueled by suspicions that Turkey is supporting the Sunni Muslim militants, the Kurds have clashed at Mursitpinar in Turkey with security forces who have fired water cannon and tear gas partly in a bid to prevent them joining the fight across the border in the Syrian town of Kobani.

    • About Daren

      "I am based in Istanbul where I cover a broad range of financial and general news. I joined Reuters in Ankara in 1996 and left Turkey to work in London in 2000. I returned to Istanbul in 2003."
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