Tag Archives: Syria

YPG Spokesman in Kobane: We Are Continuing Our Victory Operation

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Mutlu Civiroglu https://twitter.com/mutludc

Fighting in Kobane which has left four months behind has become harder with the onset of the winter. What has been witnessed on the battlefield in the past three, four days?

Within the last four months left behind, we have mounted unprecedented resistance against the dark terrorist powers of the Middle East. Gaining strength from this resistance, we have in recent days repelled the ISIS attacks in Mekteba Reş (Black School) area and Mishtenur Neighborhood also. We have reseized many streets and avenues under ISIS control as part of the operation to liberate Kobane which we are continuing for nearly one month now. The ISIS couldn’t tolerate losing these areas of course. They launched quite severe attacks to take back what they have lost. We however proved with our resistance that even a single inch of the areas taken by YPG will not fall into the hands of the ISIS anymore. They carried out suicide car attacks that resulted in the demolition of dozens of houses around the scenes, while dozens of theirs committed suicide attacks too. Yet they haven’t been able to advance. This is how the ISIS is being forced out of Kobane and how we are continuing our victory operation to liberate Kobane . I can say that Kobane is taking one more step on the path to victory every day.

Şoreş Hesen (Foto: Hawar News)
Şoreş Hesen (Foto: Hawar News)

Are the areas you have mentioned, which include the Water Reservoir, Mekteba Reş and Mishtenur Neighborhood, currently under your control?

Right, these areas are under our control now and being protected against fresh attacks by the ISIS. Besides remaining in defensive position, we are also continuing our work to liberate the city. We are repelling all the heavy attacks and making further advances. We have established the criteria of this move, which is based on not retreating.

Public opinion widely convinced by now that Kobane will not fall and the YPG will not be defeated. Many believe, however, the process of liberating Kobane is progressing slowly. How do you comment on that?

As we stated several times previously, street fighting is a difficult one which has no rules. All the houses and streets currently under ISIS control are connected to each other, forming completeness. It is therefore not possible to draw the ISIS back from all these houses and streets within a short time. The ISIS is an organization that recognizes neither humanity nor rules. We are making a slow progress because we secure the areas we seize, making sure to give them no opportunity to infiltrate into these areas again.

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For the last several days, it has been reported that the ISIS is bringing in reinforcements from Sarrin, Tal Abyad and surrounding cities. Is that true?

Yes, those reports are absolutely true. ISIS brings up reinforcements every day and owing to the winter conditions, exhaustion and other reasons they are rotating out different groups every 5-6 days. None of their fighters has the will to stay and fight in Kobane for more than a month. Therefore they are continuously changing groups of fighters. Those who get tired go back to the surrounding villages and cities and new ones come to take their place. We see how whenever we destroy a unit another comes to take its place. Up until now more than 10 Chechen units have been destroyed. 6-7 Turkish have been destroyed, and in addition many other groups from countries such as Afghanistan, Kazakhstan and Tajikistan and others have also been destroyed. We see every group we kill being replaced by a new one.  The ISIS thugs fighting us in Kobane consist of fighters from 27 various countries. These remarks of ours are grounded on evidences and documents.

Apart from that, a large number of ISIS members that are coming to fight against the Kurds in Rojava are crossing through Turkish borders. Whether or not the [Turkish] state is aware of this we are saying this as a criticism. Turkey must stop and think about this matter seriously. Up until now hundreds of people from Turkey have been killed here, and if you want to proof then we are happy to share these documents with the press in a suitable manner.

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You are making an interesting claim, and it would be possible for you to share these documents with the public. Because people seem to be talking about a small number but you are talking about hundreds.

Yes, we could share these documents with you and it would not be difficult. Turkey should look into its control of the border. If Turkey is not cooperating with ISIS they must prove to the world that they have no connections with the people that cross through their own territory. Moreover they should stop ISIS from organizing everywhere from Ankara to the Kurdish cities [of Turkey]. The large number of Turkish ISIS members who have been killed in Kobane has raised our suspicions. Everyone knows that all of these gang members – those from Chechnya, Tajikistan, Kazakhstan, the Arab countries, but also the United States, France and Germany – are crossing from Turkey to Rojava.

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I want to ask about the support for ISIS coming from Tal Abyad, Sirrin and some of the other from surrounding cities. Some question why the coalition does not target the roads on which they are bringing up their support. If they continue to be able to bring up support in this manner the battle will go on much longer. What can you tell us on this?

Up until now 95% of the airstrikes in Kobane have been successful. They have gotten the expected results, and under the rubble of the collapsed houses we have recovered many ISIS corpses. I cannot say with any certainty why the coalition is not targeting areas outside of Kobane. We have no authority over them.

However as a suggestion we can propose that they use more warplanes. This is to say that if there is a plane patrolling over Kobane another plane should be patrolling outside of Kobane. We think such a possibility exists, and that in the place of one plane the coalition could send seven. We know that the coalition is operating heavily around Shengal [Sinjar], Til Hamis, Rakka and even Baghdad but we believe that the coalition can send another plane. We are of the opinion that even if it is just one more plane that the logistics and weapons support could be cut. A short time ago the coalition targeted ISIS 7km to the east in the village of Şêran and destroyed a 10 person squad. This is something new that is an airstrike outside of Kobane is taking place! Right now there is a plane above Kobane ready to carry out airstrikes and searching for targets. Of course if there had been two planes then one could be over Kobane and the other patrolling outside and we would get better results.

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Last week  there were two attacks in France and 17 people were killed. As the YPG how do you assess these attacks?

ISIS is an inhumane organization. We consider it important that different people and democratic countries are coming together and working together against such groups. It might even have been a little overdue. We have been fighting against ISIS for a year and a half in Syria. Everyone saw this but remained silent about it. We criticized this silence. We look at the many different world leaders who took part in the march in France as a response to our criticism. We now know that the whole world will support us in the battle we are waging against the enemies of humanity.

We want to emphasize once more that as much as we are protecting ourselves, we are also protecting humanity from a brutal organization that is a threat for the entire world. For this reason, we believe more support needs to be given to the YPG, which has fought ISIS on the frontlines and has been paying the heaviest price. All countries including France and other coalition members and even countries not in the coalition should support us. With this support we can be rid of ISIS which is the enemy of humanity, even more quickly.

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In some news reports recently it has been reported that France has provided the YPG with armed support. Are these claims true?

No, such aid has not yet been discussed. Other than the weapons provided by Southern Kurdistan [KRG] and airdropped by American planes and those brought by the peshmergas themselves, no other weapons have reached us. I want to underline this. However of course we need weapons and ammunition to win this battle. We are certainly expecting aid from France and other countries.

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For French translation of the interview: https://civiroglu.net/2015/01/16/ypg-a-kobane/

For German translation of the interview: https://civiroglu.net/2015/01/16/ypg-kobane-2/

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For my participation to a show, interview me or get a quote on Kobane and other Kurdish related issues, please contact me at mciviroglu@gmail.com

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Thanks for https://twitter.com/bzgncl and https://twitter.com/TheRojavaReport for translating this interview into English

Urgent Appeal to International Community from Kobane Officials

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Horrifying Image of Devastation in Kobane

While the historical resistance of the People Protection Units (YPG) and the Women Protection Units (YPJ) continues against Daash terrorists, making a major victory with their heroic steadfastness, the rubble of destruction and devastation throughout the city increases.

Moreover, the negative effects of the war on Kobane civilians from children, women and elderly people accumulate either inside the city or on the boarder points with Turkey.

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Children are living under tough circumstances in Kobane

Therefore, the possibility of living and pursue life almost become impossible and even warn of an impending humanitarian disaster. Especially hard coldness of winter and spreading of residues harmful projectiles further endanger lives of human and other beings.

But, despite the destruction and devastation of Kobane Canton, its resistance takes a global and humanitarian dimensions beyond its borders, reflecting the human values and objectives. The sacrifices of its heroes and defenders become general humanitarian gains that turn their steadfast city to a global defender front for the international community and humanity as whole.

The above mentioned impose on everyone’s duty to support and provide help to them as long as the security and safety of all of us in danger.

The Executive Council in Kobane Canton salutes the heroic resistance of YPG, YPJ, Free Syrian Army (FSA) and Peshmerga forces against Daash in an ordinary meeting today.

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Kobane Defense Chief General Ismet Hasan and Peshmerga Commander General Ahmed Gerdi

The Council members appreciate sacrifices of the mentioned common forces and salute their bravery and honest commitment to defend the noble humanitarian values and their strenuously quest to build a democratic, fair and equal society, which shares peace and tranquility regionally and globally.

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Kobane Children Are Under Threat of Continues ISIS Shelling

The Council members, at the same time, saddened with the  global indifference towards Kobane, expressing their deep regret for the failure of the humanitarian organizations and democratic countries to the worsening humanitarian situation where Kobane civilians exposed from all sides to instantaneous indiscriminate shells and continuing attacks of Daash, killing and injuring many of them.

In addition to, great challenges left by the suffocating siege on the province, making providing life means and its essential things impossible. With the gradual disappear from the stocks of food, medicine and baby milk of warehouses or destroy completely by bomb shelling.

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Dr. Welat Omer and Medical Team Delivering Aid to Displaced Kobane Residents

So, there is possibility of a humanitarian catastrophe against civilians if the international community does not take the initiative to meet the calls of our citizens and defenders to open a safe humanitarian corridor to cleanse the effects of missiles, bombings and the rubble of destruction.

We appeal international community to make very effort to save the lives of children and other civilians by offering them through support and aid of medical, food and preventive fundamentals.

Kobane 19/12/2014

The Executive Board of Kobane Canton, Syria

PM of Kobane: A Humanitarian Corridor for Thousands of Civilians Urgently Needed

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Mr. Anwar Moslem, clashes in Kobane continue for over three months now. What is the latest situation in Kobane now, especially with regard to military developments?

ISIS has been attacking Kobane with heavy weapons for more than three months. YPG and YPJ forces have mounted a great resistance to these attacks. Recently, YPG and YPJ have advanced several streets further on the eastern front, and also made further advances on the southern front. However, the main problem on these fronts is the presence of a street fighting. The ISIS is already outside the city on the western front. Airstrikes of the coalition led by the U.S. are targeting the positions and munitions of the ISIS. We can say that defeating ISIS in Kobane will be a huge gain for the entire humanity. We want everyone to see this point very clearly.

Kobane will attain victory soon, and we truly believe this. However, there still remain some dangers, as there are thousands of civilians in Kobane, including children, who are facing great difficulties due to harsh winter conditions. We are once again calling on the international community to enable the opening of a humanitarian corridor into Kobane. This Tuesday’s mortar attacks by the ISIS have left three civilians martyred and dozens of others injured.

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What do the civilians stranded in Kobane and on the border primarily need in the face of harsh winter conditions?

Three quarters of the Kobane city have turned into ruin as result of the attacks by the ISIS. The civilians in Kobane and on the border are mainly in need of clothing, food and beverage. They are also facing a great shortage of medicine. In addition, camps are needed to be built in order to provide shelter and a warm place for these people. This is also needed for thousands of people who will remain outside when they turn back once the resistance in Kobane ends up in victory.

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Human rights defenders and international aid organizations need to extend a hand to these people whose houses have all been demolished. Since the day clashes broke out in Kobane, it has been only the municipalities, civilian aid organizations and the people of North Kurdistan [of Turkey] to look after the people of Kobane. Regardless of all the calls we have issued so far, I regret to tell that international organizations are yet to provide any help. The situation of the Kobane people in the city, on the border and in tent cities in Suruc is really heartbreaking.

Turkish government says it has provided great help to the Kobane people and opened its doors to them. You are, however, saying that it has been only the ‘municipalities in the north [of Kurdistan/Turkey’ to provide help?

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The statements by Turkey do really sadden us. We weren’t expecting Turkey to act like this. ISIS has recently attacked Kobane from the Mursitpinar Border Crossing on the Turkish side, but Turkey denied this. In relation with that attack, we asked politicians and civilians, from either inside or outside Turkey, to establish a commission of investigation, but Turkey remained silent.

Our people in refugee camps in Suruc are in a dire situation and children aren’t even allowed to receive education in their mother tongue. Turkey is always repeating the same thing, saying that ‘we have opened our doors’. After all, it is a humanitarian duty to open doors to these people who fled the massacres committed by the ISIS in Mosul, Tikrit and everywhere else. Apart from “opening its doors”, Turkey has provided no noticeable help, this is the truth. All human rights defenders, independent organizations and media workers can examine the situation in camps in Suruc in order to see and witness this truth themselves.

What would you like to say about the ISIS attack which left two civilians dead in Australia?

Terrorist actions do really hurt all humanity. Several years ago, thousands of innocent civilians were killed in September 11 terror attacks America. This was followed by similar incidents in France, Spain, Canada and most recently in Australia. The terror in Kobane is the same of the terror in these countries. We offer our condolences to the families of these people and the Australian government. The entire world needs to act together against this terror which is targeting the peoples and religions.

Ms. Hillary Clinton said in a most recent statement that the U.S. should provide assistance to the Kurdish female fighters of the YPJ, and spoke highly of them. What would you say in this regard?

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From Kobane, we are sending our greetings to all the American people who have supported us. The statement of Ms. Hillary Clinton has honored us. We are once again extending our thanks to all the American authorities that have lent a helping hand to us. They also have a share in this resistance. The resistance of the YPJ in Kobane is the resistance of all the world’s women. Ms. Hillary Clinton does also have a share in this resistance for she has supported it. We hope that the whole world will in the same way support the YPG, the YPJ and Kobane. The victory in Kobane will be the victory of all the peoples standing against terror.

Kobane now is a place known by the whole world and people from across the world who want to provide help inquire about how to reach you. Is there a certain mechanism in place for people to assist you?

All three sides of Kobane have been surrounded by the ISIS and Turkey is on the other side. Turkey is just permitting the crossing of some wounded people and aid. We are facing some problems in this regard as we cannot move freely. A bank account belong to our administration will be opened soon to enable the people intending to help to reach us. It is not only the Kurdish people but everyone who believes in democracy, peace and humanity that should provide support to the civilians in Kobane.

The Christmas Day and the New Year is approaching. What is your message for the people whose hearts are with Kobane?

I celebrate the Christmas Day of the whole world. There were people who wanted to celebrate it here too but there is a war still going on, the ISIS has not allowed this. I hope 2015 will be a year of peace and fraternity. I wish a Happy New Year where there is no cruelty and all peoples and religions can live together and in peace. All those hearing our voice should support the resistance in Kobane in the New Year also, and provide any help they can for a new Kobane to be built in the wake of victory.

 

* Translated into English by Berna Özgencil https://twitter.com/bzgncl

American YPG Fighter Dean Parker Tells His Interesting Story

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American Dean Parker of Colorado recently joined Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) to fight against ISIS. In this exclusive interview Parker speaks about his decision to join YPG and his life in Rojava

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Please click the link below to listen to the interview with Dean Parker

Kobane Journalist Bali: Thousands of Civilians Try to Survive Facing Death Every Day

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Mr. Bali, as a journalist currently living in Kobane you are following the events on the ground closely. According to some media reports, Kobane is almost completely freed from ISIS.  Is such news telling the truth?

Kobane as the symbol of resistance is continuing to fight. News that declare Kobane is totally freed, are true at all. I suspect that such deceitful and false news are part of a hideous plan pursued against Kobane. It was especially the Turkish media that spread such news. Mr. Erdogan and Davutoglu had statements to the effect that “Kobane’s situation was good.” A few times they stated that ISIS left Kobane and retreated to Aleppo. In this way, they were hoping to leave Kobane out of news agenda and draw public attention to Aleppo. As someone living in Kobane right now, I would like to ask this to journalists who spread this type of news: if the situation in Kobane is good, if ISIS has withdrawn from here totally and there is no longer any danger, why are you not coming into Kobane? Why are hundreds of thousands of Kurds who took refuge to the north of our country, are still living in refugee camps there?

Tens of shells everyday target homes and civilians living in Kobane get wounded. It is true that a great resistance is put up in Kobane; likewise, the YPG and YPJ have taken the initiative into their hands. But ISIS is still sustaining a street fight against Kurdish people in Kobane. Just a couple of hours ago, ISIS conducted attacks against Mursitpinar Border Gate [between Kobane and Turkey]. ISIS has been trying daily to capture this border gate ever since the first clashes in Kobane started. This border gate is located in the middle of Kobane. If ISIS is totally withdrawn from Kobane [as reported by some media], how could it attack to this gate?

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Mustafa Bali

You say Turkish media is spreading such false news, but such news also finds a place in Kurdish media?

Language is not a sufficient criterion to tell whether the media is that of Kurdish or Turkish [origin]. When the clashes started in Kobane, some media, despite the fact that they were Kurdish media, were spreading the “news of defeat.” The Kurdish media that I referred to were reporting “Kobane is going to fall after 1-2 km”, as if measuring the distance inch by inch and the language in which they reported this was Kurdish. What I am saying is that the mere use of Kurdish language by such media is not a good measure of their Kurdish-ness. Media that identifies with the suffering and resistance in Kobane, media that boosts the spirit when needed –in place of spreading demoralizing news- may be called Kurdish media, not the ones that say “situation in Kobane is calm and very good.”

As I mentioned earlier, Mr. Erdogan and Davutoglu said things like “ISIS withdrew from Kobane and was heading toward Aleppo” because they wanted to drop Kobane from the news agenda. And in an unconscious way, some media organizations also strive to spread the news of a premature victory. A surface reading of such news give a misleading impression of complete liberation of Kobane which does not reflect the reality at all, the danger and the clashes are continuing…

I heard an explosion now, is there an attack again [sound of an explosion was heard during the interview]?

Kobani as you also heard, almost every five minutes we are hit with mortar shells. We are the civilians living in Kobane and such attacks target us. Right now tens of civilians are ducking into corners, trying to protect themselves from these mortar shells that are fired from east of Kobane targeting its west.

Aside from mortar shells, with what other weapons does ISIS attack Kobane?

ISIS uses all kinds of military vehicles to attack Kobane. In addition it uses Dushka, Kalashnikovs, BKS [PKMS], hand grenades and suicide car bombings. Everyone is wondering about one thing: why is ISIS still not finished in Kobane after all these aerial bombings?

ISIS needs to be repelled from Kobane via room to room fighting, not street by street. Every nook and corner that ISIS has reached is pillaged, destroyed, booby-trapped and mined. Clearing Kobane from ISIS is not an easy thing to do. Even a mighty force like NATO stated recently that it might take two years to clear ISIS from Mosul. The resistance in Kobane was put forth with a few Kalashnikovs. Resisting YPG fighters keep fighting because they believe in their will power. ISIS has a great military and technical might in its hands and with this might and technical capabilities, it is attacking Kobane.

One of the noticeable news of the previous weeks was that the YPG established control over the roads that brought reinforcements to the ISIS. Is ISIS still receiving reinforcements from cities like Talabyad, Rakka and Jarablus bordering Kobane?

It has been more than two weeks that the YPG is fighting in villages of Kobane using guerrilla tactics. Such tactics have certainly increased the pressures on ISIS. It is true that they cannot reach Kobane as easily as before. However, this should not be interpreted as these roads are under complete control and that ISIS will no longer get reinforcements via these roads. ISIS is receiving reinforcements (using vehicles) every day, using different roads and methods. They use big vehicles to transport their mortar cannons here, the sounds of which you heard twice during this interview. They fire between 30-40 mortars each day. This means they receive ammunition supplies every day.

In a similar way, tens of ISIS gangs are killed every day, if they had not received new reinforcements, Kobane would have been liberated by now. According to the information we receive from our sources in Manbij, Talabyad and Rakka, every day reinforcements are sent to ISIS. Specifically they move from Rakka to Talabyad and from there into Kobane.

OK, what is the situation of thousands of civilians in Kobane and those that wait along the border? How will they survive through the harsh winter conditions?

I truly don’t know how to describe the situation of the civilians who remain in Kobane and along the border area. Thousands of civilians most of whom are children and elderly try to survive facing death every day. Before the harsh winter conditions set in, there was the danger of dying from mortar shells, fire from military vehicles, sometimes from the Turkish tanks or at the hands of ISIS suicide bombings. But, now to these added the new danger of freezing to death. These civilians are in need of everything ranging from water, food, winter necessities and fuel. Especially, the fuel is critical. There is no fuel in Kobane and Turkey does not allow the passage of fuel. We appeal to everyone to do whatever they can to attend to the needs of these civilians. I saw tens of people with bare feet walking through mud and puddles on the streets of Kobane.

As the officials of the Kobane Canton have expressed previously, a security corridor should be set up under the protection of the United Nations. Again, we have to state that Turkey creates dire hardships if and when allowing help to come through the Mursitpinar Gate. Our people wait for days to pass a truck load of relief supplies from the Turkish side to our side. Turkey creates the same problems for the transfer of our wounded. They die while waiting for hours for an ambulance to arrive. We appeal to all international relief organizations to help the civilians here, through this interview with you…

*Translated into English by Burhan Elturan

Are the British YPG Fighters Really Mercenaries?

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The Observer published a story on British YPG fighters James Hughes and Jamie Read, describing them as “mercenaries”.

I answered BBC’s questions on this issue and objected the idea to show British and other Westerner YPG fighters as “mercenaries”

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This is the link of the story “UK ‘mercenaries’ fighting Islamic State terrorist forces in Syria”

http://www.theguardian.com/world/2014/nov/22/uk-mercenaries-fighting-islamic-state-terrorist-syria

In Day 50, A Synopsis of the Situation in Kobane

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Mutlu Civiroglu https://twitter.com/mutludc

According to military, political and civilian sources in Kobane, in the day 50 of the resistance,  YPG has been gaining a momentum after successfully repelling strong ISIS attacks in eastern front which aimed at seizing the border crossing. Despite excessive man power and close combat in eastern front, YPG forces did not allow ISIS to advance.

With recent offensive in eastern front, ISIS hoped to seize the border gate to Turkey to totally suffocate the city and force YPG to surrender. Senior YPG sources report ISIS resorted to more than 20 car bombs in recent days, and all of these attacks were thwarted successfully with only some light YPG injuries.

One other reason for the recent ISIS attack on east was to prevent arrival of the Iraqi Kurdish peshmergas and heavy weaponry they brought along. As of November 3, the situation in eastern front is stable and ISIS members were further driven out from the border area. Kobane sources report that the failure of recent ISIS push caused demoralization of ISIS, and killing of 3 princes in last 48 further even worsened the situation on the ground.

On Sunday night clashes continued in East and South with some YPG advance reported. In Western front Kurdish peshermergas first time actively involved in a major assault. In this front YPG, “Euphrates Volcano” and Peshmerga forces carry out attack against ISIS positions in Abrus, Albalur and Minaz villages.

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One other note is that US led coalition airstrikes have been playing a major role in destroying heavy ISIS weaponry which caused serious damages and destroyed many houses in the city. Sources in Kobane add that ISIS shelling decreased thanks to successful airstrikes.

However, it is still too early to conclude that the danger is over and ISIS is defeated. It is not secret that ISIS has made Kobane a matter of honor and will not give up easily. Therefore, despite recent major setbacks, ISIS forces in Kobane still receive reinforcements from Raqqa and surrounding cities, and some field commanders were replaced with new ones.

It is also reported that the arrival of peshmergas has brought a positive atmosphere for the Kurds and considerably lifted the spirit of YPG fighters on the frontline as well as the civilians in the city.

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If you want my participation to a show, interview me or get a quote on Kobane and other Kurdish related issues, please contact me at mciviroglu@gmail.com

You can follow me on Twitter for latest updates from Kobani  https://twitter.com/mutludc

Premier of Kobane Anwar Moslem: The Fall of Kobane Would Be the Fall of Humanity

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Anwar Moslem on the right with dark shirt

In an exclusive interview conducted on Wednesday, Ovober 8, 20014, the Premier of local Kurdish Kobane Canton administration Anwar Moslem provides important update about Kobane and ongoing ISIS attacks against the city.

Mutlu Civiroglu https://twitter.com/mutludc

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Mr. Moslem, what’s the current situation in Kobane?

ISIS hasn’t withdrawn yet. ISIS is still in the eastern, southeastern and southern [parts of the town. They are a little away from the western section. Clashes continue so far. Fierce ffightings are taking place. They aim for a massacre. There are thousands of civilians here; children, women and elderly. As the resistance is in its 24th day, they want to crush it spitefully with all the civilians as well. The fact is there is heroic resistance here by Kurdish Protection Units (YPG). American and coalition air strikes are very welcome here by our forces and the Canton administration.

Tell me about the civilians inside Kobane. There are reports that all civilians left the city?

Claims that there are no civilians in Kobane are false. Nobody can, nobody dares to get out of their homes as there are fierce clashes and flying bullets everywhere. There are thousands of civilians under the ISIS threat. Some are here in the city; some others are close to the border. Their situation is getting worse and dangerous. Some media say Kobane is empty. It’s not true. There are civilians even in the villages ISIS has overrun. Their situation too is dangerous. I repeat that there are civilians in the town. I can’t give you an exact number, but there are thousands of civilians here. If the media wants we can provide pictures and interviews with civilians. Our main purpose in calling the international community is protecting these civilians, children and women.

American and coalition air strikes have had effective results in the last two days. When jets strike civilians in the city cheer up. They salute American jets. Defense Ministry of the Kobane administration said, in a statement, that our YPG forces and the coalition partners can root out ISIS from the Middle East.

You mentioned airstrikes. How effective are today’s air strikes?

They are effective today as well. But we cannot know how much exactly. As the fighting rages on we can’t determine the effect. We are in touch with our forces who witness air strikes. But they are usually busy in fighting ISIS militants. We don’t want to keep them busy, so we avoid calling them frequently.

The jets carry out a good mission, especially for the well-being of civilians. That’s why the continuation of air strikes in Kobane against ISIS is important. The destruction of ISIS’s tanks, Humvees and other heavy vehicles is of utmost importance. Today they carried out a car bomb attack. That’s why American, British, French and all other coalition partner’s jets should continue targeting ISIS in Kobane Canton. ISIS receives reinforcement from Tal Abyad and Raqqah. The coalition partners should be tracking them better. They must stop them. So that we can finish them off inside Kobane and save the civilians.

Some media reports claim these airstrikes are useless. Are they?

No, they are pretty effective in last two days. As the head of the Canton Administration, I recognize the fact that they are helpful and effective. ISIS militants are using artillery they brought from Mosul, and it is used against the civilians as well. So why should the coalition stop the bombardment? The coalition is saving these civilians and the canton. So be it known by all sides that YPG on the ground with the American and coalition jets overhead can fight ISIS off.

Is YPG capable of expelling ISIS from Kobane?

Yes, as long as their artillery, vehicles and tanks are destroyed, new reinforcements are cut off; we don’t have anti-tank weaponry by the way, our forces can finish them off. YPG has promised to annihilate those thugs.

What about YPG loses and injuries? How many ISIS fighters were killed?

YPG and Women’s Defense Units (YPJ) are the sons and daughters of this people. Most of these fighters are in their twenties. They fight against ISIS looters, thieves whose aim is destruction.

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Arin Mirkan

ISIS commits inhuman actions; they behead even our girls. YPG and YPJ are fighting against such a cruel terrorist group.

A young Kurdish woman Arin Mirkan who was a YPJ commander chose to detonate herself among a group of ISIS members. Rather than surrendering to ISIS, she chose sacrificing her life such in such heroic way.

But, we are hopeful that our forces with the help of the coalition partners can fight ISIS till they are annihilated, and we can rebuild peace and stability once more.

What about the reaction of people around the globe to your case? American people are deeply concerned that the Kobane will fall. Similarly people in other corner of the world have similar concerns for you.

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The memory of 9/11 is with us. We especially want to reach out to the American people and their government. We know their suffering too. We remember terrorist attacks against civilians in Spain, France and elsewhere. We are aware of what happened innocent journalists and aid workers at terrorists’ hands.

We, as the administration of Kobane Canton, call upon all sides to challenge the threat together as to create security. We believe in support of the American people and people all over the world.

I would like to tank all human rights defenders in becoming a voice for the voiceless Kobane. I am very grateful on behalf of the people of Kobane. I want everyone to know that fall of Kobane would be the fall of humanity. I therefore appeal everyone to stand up for Kobane and stand with us in these very difficult days.

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If you want my participation to a show, interview me or get a quote on Kobane and other Kurdish related issues, please contact me at mciviroglu@gmail.com

You can follow me on Twitter for latest updates from Kobani  https://twitter.com/mutludc

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This interview was translated from Kurdish into English by Ê Din

Kobane Defense Minister Ismet Hasan Warns About a Massacre in Kobane

Kurdish Woman Kobane
We spoke with Kobane Defense Minister Ismet Sheikh Hasan about the situation in the city
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According to reports last night, Kobane is about to fall, or there is a possibility it might fall. What is the situation now?
Yes it is true. Generally, the clashes are ongoing in the surrounding areas of Kobane. The clashes that started 18 days ago are still continuing. ISIS is attacking Kobane with all its force and heavy weaponry. We only have light arms. We are fighting with Kalashnikovs and RPGs. This is the situation as of now, and they have not been able to enter Kobane until now. We are defending Kobane. They have surrounded Kobane on all sides but we are defending the city. They are attacking us with their artillery and tanks.
Why have they not been able to enter the city? Is it because they are waiting for something or is it down to your resistance?
We are upholding a historical resistance. In many places, in Helunce village on the east side there are many dead bodies they have left lying there. They were unable to progress from the east side. As it is well known, they are able to bring reinforcements and ammunition from Raqqa, Hasakah and Aleppo. Last night around 10pm-12am they attacked once more tanks and and artilleries and were able to breach the border of the city.
You had also said yesterday that they were able to bring reinforcements from Raqqa and the other districts. How are they able to come so easily? I thought there were air strikes against them by America and the coalition. Were these ineffective?
I don’t know. I haven’t seen new air strikes. However, 3-4 days ago they had hit a tank and a vehicle of theirs in an air strike. The place they hit last night was a village called Muburba in the east side of Kobane. I never saw any other air strike. If they have so much air power, why don’t they use it? They couldn’t have progressed so much. They could not have brought so many reinforcements.
According to some experts, ISIS is now too close to the city so air strikes are now pointless. It is said that ISIS and YPG are intertwined at the moment. They also say that ISIS has changed tactics and is no longer moving in convoys but in smaller groups so that the planes cannot spot them. What do you say to this?
I can say that ISIS are NOT inside of town. They are outside. I can show their location to whoever wants. All their forces are in Mezra Dawud village in a house with red brick which is 4-5 kilometers far away from the east of Kobane. From the West, they are in Yedoqe Village near the broadcast center [radio center which is 2 km far from Kobane] and in school of Gulmet Village and Alpanore. They are there and [US] can bomb them. Again, there are no ISIS forces inside of Kobane.
Why is this kind of information coming out then? Is it on purpose or accidental?
I would say that there are plans for Kobane. Some are thinking about their own interests, some people, states, I don’t know maybe they are spreading this information. But these are not true. They haven’t entered Kobane, they are outside Kobane. If they really wanted they could strike ISIS, even their headquarters.
I want to come back to Kobane. What is the situation of the people in Kobane? Those of you in the administration, what do you think? 
We are all living in Kobane, with our children. Two of my children are on the front lines. We will not leave Kobane, we will stay. We will resist in Kobane. We are the YPG/YPJ, those that want to combat terrorism, the whole world has shut its eyes, they don’t want too see us or listen to us. They want ISIS to succeed and not the Kurdish people.
Have you received any help from the Kurds of other parts?
Until now we have not received any help from the whole world. Only some people from the North [Kurdistan], civilized people from the North have come. Other than that no one has come and no ammunition or help has reached us. Some humanitarian aid and people have come from the North to help defend Kobane; but they are not trained and are inexperienced, we will train them.
If ISIS come, if they enter the city what will you do? Will you leave the city or will you fight?
We will resist to the end. Even if there is only one of us left we will fight for Kobane. Now we have made preparations for a fight in the city, and so we will fight in the city to the end, we will not leave Kobane for no one. The whole world is claiming that they are fighting terror; our call to them is where are they? Why are they not fighting terror? They have beheaded so many people, they took 6 people from the village of Murade, they were civilians and they beheaded two of them. The truth is the whole world has shut its eyes and don’t want to see or hear what is going on. We want to call upon those countries that are fighting against terrorism. It is the matter of time ISIS enters the city and commit a large scale massacre against the people in Kobane as happened in Sinjar. They [US and coalition] need to strike ISIS targets before too late. Threat of ISIS is not only for the Kurds but also for the entire world. Today it is the Kurds, tomorrow it will be someone else. If a massacre takes place tomorrow, international community will be responsible.
What do you think of the reaction shown by the Kurds as a people? The Kurds in Europe, or in the other parts; for example the Kurds of Diyarbakir have not opened their shops to protest ISIS. 
It is not enough. The Kurds everywhere must walk to government institutions around the whole world, they must make the world aware that these are terrorists, we want all our Kurds in Europe in whichever country they are in and make their feelings known to these countries and the institutions there. The whole world is standing by as we fight with ISIS, there is no force that can defeat ISIS but us. They should make the whole world aware of this.