Kurdish areas controlled by Islamic group north Syria



ARA News

Tel Kocher, Qamishli, Syria− With the dawn of the first day of Eid al-Adha (celebrated by Muslims worldwide), al-Qaeda affiliated group of the Islamic State in Iraq and Sham (ISIS) attacked several headquarters of the Kurdish forces of the Popular Protection Units (YPG) in Syria’s north-eastern Kurdish populated areas.

Villages of Tel Alo, Kharab Bajar and Kerhok, east of Qamishli/Qamishlo, were targeted by the ISIS fighters  on Tuesday, sources in Kerhok said. Fierce clashes took broke out between the Kurdish YPG and the ISIS due to the Islamic group’s attacks on these areas.  

The oil-rich bordering village of Tel Kocher was reportedly controlled by the ISIS members on Wednesday. Several neighbourhoods in Tel Alo and al-Naoura villages were taken over by the same group after the Tuesday’s clashes.  

According to sources, ISIS members dominated seven oil wells in Tel Kocher after they controlled the village and its neighbouring areas.

“The Islamic fighters started immediately selling crude oil to refineries with high prices,” said Ahmad Youssef, one of Tel Kocher’s residents. “Schools in the village were taken as strongholds by the ISIS members.”

The al-Qaeda affiliated ISIS also controlled the town of Chel Agha, north east of Syria. Sources told ARA News that the Kurdish residents in the town are threatened to either cooperate with the Islamic forces or forced displacement will most probably result. 

On the other hand, the YPG-linked media site of ANHA reported that the Kurdish YPG forces could control the entire village of Allok after clashes with the ISIS fighters.

“21 Islamic fighters were killed during clashes with the YPG forces in Allok village. The YPG have then taken over the village and taken over the heavy weapons left by the Islamists,” ANHA reported on Tuesday. 

Armed groups linked to the opposition’s Free Syrian Army (FSA) were recently formed by the Arab residents of several Kurdish areas. Observes emphasize that the existence of such groups, next to the Kurdish YPG forces and the al-Qaeda affiliated groups of ISIS and Jabhat al-Nusra, contribute to the increasing violence in the Kurdish areas, north Syria.

Some Kurdish regions are under a shared control of different armed factions, which causes considerable insecurity leading to the displacement of hundreds of families. 

The oil-rich area of Rumailan, east of Qamishli, is jointly controlled by the ISIS and the FSA-linked fighters, while the Kurdish YPG stationed some of its forces in the southern suburbs of Rumailan, basically in Koleman village (25 km south of Rumailan). 

Amid the increasing violence and the poor economic circumstances, Syrian Kurdish residents tried to celebrate the Eid al-Adha to emphasize the determination to survive. However, the current situation in the war-torn country has apparently left no room for the Syria community to celebrate such an occasion. 

Streets of the city of Qamishli, which is considered the largest Kuridsh city in Syria, lacked the usual societal movement in such a celebration.

“The Eid celebration surreptitiously passes through Qamishlo this year,” one of Qamishli’s residents described the situation to ARA News. “Apparently, those who didn’t flee the country yet prefer to stay indoors than witnessing this sorrowful scene of empty streets.”   

Thousands of Kurdish families fled the violence and the worsening economic situation in their areas north Syria and resorted to the neighbouring Kurdistan Region in northern Iraq.   


Report by: Mir Yaqoub, Azad Jamkari and Abdul Ilah Ibrahim

Source: ARA News


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