Daesh re-enters Syrian border town of Kobani

Published June 25th, 2015 - 09:00 GMT

Isis militants have re-entered the key Syrian border city of Kobani, five months after they were driven out in what was hailed as a victory for the US-led coalition.

Fighting between Isis and the Kurdish militia defending the city has restarted, according to the UK-based monitoring group the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

Isis heralded the start of the assault overnight with a suicide car bomb attack near the border crossing between the town and Turkey, the group said.

Hospital officials, confirming the return to violence, said that at least 12 people had been killed and around 70 wounded in the bomb attack and ensuing fighting.

And while the offensive went on within the city of Kobani itself in the north, Isis also engaged the Syrian state forces in a separate attack on the Deraa city in the south.

According to Reuters, heavy fighting in Deraa was followed by army air strikes as forces loyal to President Bashar al-Assad struggled to hold on in the city, which lies close to a key border with Jordan.

In northern Syria, the Kurdish militia has been making gains in recent weeks and months - most notably when Isis was driven out of the key city of Tal Abyad earlier in June.

The removal of Isis from Kobani on 26 January made international headlines earlier this year, after a siege that had lasted a number of months. It was then seen as a crucial symbolic victory, stopping the advance of the jihadist group.

It is almost one year since the anniversary of Isis declaring a caliphate across the territories it controls, and the group has threatened "something big" to mark the holy month of Ramadan.

By Adam Withnall


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