Tel Abyad, Syria− On Sunday, clashes erupted between fighters of the Islamic State of Iraq the Levant (ISIL) −affiliated with al-Qaeda− and the Kurdish forces of the Popular Protection Units (YPG) −armed wing of the Democratic Union Party (PYD)− in the western countryside of Girespi/Tel Abyad in Raqqa province, north Syria.
Local sources said that heavy weapons were used during the clashes on Sunday morning.
Sources reported to ARA News that a number of ISIL fighters were killed during the clashes.
“Three ISIL fighters were killed in the village of Birkino, six in Susik and at least 12 ISIL members were killed in the village of Yarqo,” said S. Serhad, a local media activist in Tel Abyad. “”Four ISIL’s military vehicles were destroyed by the YPG fighters during the clashes.”
On the other hand, at least seven members of the Kurdish YPG were killed, activists said.
The clashes coincided artillery bombardment of several Kurdish areas near Tel Abyad by the ISIL members.
An eyewitness based in the area told ARA News that villages of Giresor and Kitkaniya were targeted with sporadic shelling by the ISIL fighters.
“A number of residential buildings in both villages were totally destroyed due to the shelling,” he said. “The majority of residents evacuated their houses amid a state of panic.”
Meanwhile, the al-Qaeda-linked ISIL group received military reinforcements to strengthen its position in Tel Abyad and other north eastern areas in Syria.
Most of the Kurdish areas in Syria suffer sporadic clashes between the Kurdish forces and Islamists −specifically ISIL− the fact that led thousands of families to leave their villages and cities and resort to neighbouring countries.
Reporting by: Ridwan Bizar
Source: ARA News
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