Kurdish man stands next to the ruins of his house in Kobane after returning from a refugee camp in Turkey. Photo: ARA News
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KOBANE – Civilian casualties were reported on Monday in the western countryside of Kobane after militants of the Islamic State (ISIS) targeted several Kurdish villages with mortar shells, locals reported.
At least eight people were killed and twenty others wounded under heavy shelling by ISIS extremists west of Kobane.
Speaking to ARA News in Kobane, member of the Kurdish YPG forces Sarhad Abbas said that the ISIS-led shelling has targeted several Kurdish villages, including Jada and Qubba, near the Euphrates River.
“Most of the shells hit villagers homes in the western countryside of Kobane, causing the death and injury of dozens, mostly women and children” he said.
Kurdish forces of the People’s Protection Units (YPG) responded with artillery shelling on ISIS strongholds on the western bank of Euphrates River on Monday evening.
“Our shelling hit direct targets of ISIS terrorists in the vicinity of Jarablus city,” Abbas reported. The outcomes of the Kurdish counter-attack were not clear.
On Thursday, ISIS militant fighters launched an offensive on the Kurdish village of Qolan in the southern countryside of Kobane.
Amid constant attempts by the radical group to infiltrate into the southern countryside of Kobane, fierce clashes took place in the vicinity of Qolan between ISIS militants and Kurdish YPG forces.
Speaking to ARA News, YPG member Habun Osman said: “Our forces repelled a new ISIS attack on the southern countryside of Kobane. After three hours of clashes, the ISIS terrorists withdrew from the area on Thursday evening.”
At least one ISIS militant was killed and three injured during the clashes, while two Kurdish fighters were hardly wounded.
“We have taken strict security measures in order to prevent the terror group from returning to Kobane region,” Osman said.
In August, militants of the Islamic State infiltrated into Qolan village and abducted dozens of Kurdish civilians. Among the abductees were women and children, who have recently returned to their hometown after the YPG forces regained the area and expelled militants of the radical group.
Speaking to ARA News, YPG fighter Sarhad Abbas said: “We are concerned about the destiny of the abductees. We are aware that the barbarians of ISIS use civilians as human shields during battles, that’s why we are deeply concerned.”
Kurdish forces of the YPG and Peshmerga liberated the city of Kobane in January, after four months of fierce battles with the radical group of Islamic State.
In June, some ISIS militants infiltrated into Kobane city and committed a massacre in which dozens of civilians were slaughtered.
Reporting by: Muhammad Ali
Source: ARA News