Former Saudi Major Killed in Kobani by Kurds

Kurdish fighters weathered an onslaught by ISIS on Tuesday as they awaited promised reinforcements

A former Saudi officer who joined the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) was killed on Monday by Kurdish militants in the border city of Kobani, a Zaman al-Wasl reporter said.

 

A former major in the Saudi Interior Ministry, Hisham Abdulla al-Shaalan, was reportedly killed in ongoing battles between ISIS fighters and Kurdish militias.

 

Meanwhile, Kurdish fighters weathered an onslaught by ISIS on Tuesday as they awaited promised reinforcements, AFP reported.

 

The Kurdish militia faced a fierce attack by ISIS fighters, including suicide bombers, late on Monday, that appeared aimed at cutting off the border with Turkey before any reinforcements could arrive, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

 

Fighting continued on Tuesday with exchanges between ISIS forces in the east of the town and Kurds in the west and there were reports of an explosion, probably a car bomb, the Britain-based monitoring group said.

 

Kobani has become a crucial symbolic battleground in the war against ISIS, which is fighting to extend areas under its control in Iraq and Syria where it has declared an Islamic "caliphate".

 

Ankara announced on Monday that it would help Kurdish forces from Iraq to relieve Kobani's beleaguered defenders, in a major shift of policy that was swiftly welcomed by Washington.

 

Iraqi Kurdish officials have said they will provide the training, although any forces sent will be Syrian Kurds.

 

The U.S. administration has stepped up its commitment to Kobani in recent days, with Secretary of State John Kerry saying it would be "irresponsible" and "morally very difficult" not to help.

 

Three C-130 cargo aircraft carried out what the U.S. military called "multiple" successful drops of supplies early on Monday, including arms provided by Kurdish authorities in Iraq. 

 

Translated and edited by The Syrian Observer

 

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