Al Jazeera

Turkey: Army kills up to 200 YPG fighters in Aleppo

Turkish fighter jets strike People’s Protection Units in northern Syrian city as intense battle continues.

Turkey entered the Syrian war to try and remove ISIL from its border [Reuters]

Turkey entered the Syrian war to try and remove ISIL from its border [Reuters]

The Turkish military said its fighter jets hit Syrian Kurdish targets in northern Syria, and killed up to 200 fighters, according to state media.

The jets hit 18 targets in Maarrat Umm Hawsh, a region north of the city of Aleppo, the official news agency Anadolu said.

Quoting the army, the report claimed that between 160 and 200 fighters from the YPG, the People’s Protection Units, were killed in the raids on Wednesday night.

A Syrian-Kurdish forces leader, however, said that while Turkish jets and artillery were attacking, no more than 10 fighters had been killed so far.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a monitoring group, said at least nine YPG fighters were confirmed killed and 26 people were injured in some 20 raids.

King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia dies at 90

King Abdullah, who ruled Saudi Arabia from 1995 to 2015, will be succeeded by his half-brother, Crown Prince Salman

King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al Saud

King Abdullah bin Abdulaziz al Saud

He was one of the world’s few remaining absolute monarchs. But King Abdullah’s years as crown prince might have marked his legacy even more than his rule as king.

Abdullah bin Abdul-Aziz al-Saud became de facto ruler of the kingdom of Saudi Arabia in 1995 when his immediate predecessor, King Fahd, suffered a stroke. At the time, Abdullah was crown prince — but from that position he wielded a tremendous amount of power and influence.

Saudi state television reported his death on Thursday. He had been in the hospital for several weeks and had been suffering from pneumonia.

Syrian rebels join battle to protect Kobane

Around 50 fighters from the FSA join efforts to protect Kobane, as Kurdish fighters wait for Iraqi Peshmerga to arrive.

The Free Syrian army has been battling ISIL across Syria after coming under attack by the armed group [AP]

The Free Syrian army has been battling ISIL across Syria after coming under attack by the armed group [AP]

Syrian rebels have joined efforts to protect the besieged Syrian town of Kobane, as Kurdish fighters continue to wait for the arrival of 150 Iraqi Kurdish troops in the battle against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

Syrian Kurdish fighters in Kobane told Al Jazeera that at the request of the Turkish government, 50 Arab fighters from the Western-backed Free Syrian Army (FSA) arrived in the embattled town on Wednesday in a move aimed at halting ISIL’s advance across northern Syria.

Newaf Khalil, a senior Syrian Kurdish official, said the FSA fighters were only equipped with light arms and machineguns.

The FSA, an umbrella group of mainstream rebels fighting to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, has been battling ISIL across Syria after the armed group abducted activists and assassinated several of its commanders.

Kobane, near the Turkish border, has become a crucial battleground in the war against ISIL, which is fighting to extend areas under its control in Iraq and Syria, where it has declared an Islamic ‘”caliphate” that has not been widely recognised.

Iraqi peshmerga fighters cross into Kobane

Ten vehicles carrying Kurdish peshmerga fighters, armed with heavy weapons, push into the ISIL-besieged border town.

The Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga convoy left from the Turkish border town of Suruc on Friday night [Getty]

The Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga convoy left from the Turkish border town of Suruc on Friday night [Getty]

Iraqi peshmerga fighters have begun entering the Syrian border town of Kobane where they were expected to join the battle against Islamic State and the Levant (ISIL) fighters beseiging the town.

Peshmerga forces entered through the Yumurtalik crossing on Friday armed with heavy weaponry, including anti-aircraft machine guns and mobile rocket launchers.

Al Jazeera’s Jamal Elshayyal, reporting from the border, said the peshmerga entered five vehicles at a time with a few minutes between each crossing.

Fighters in the convoy were filmed waving Kurdish flags and flashing the victory sign.

New air strikes hit ISIL positions in Kobane 665003303001_3831459065001_20141091309648734-20

The US-led coalition has carried out its most intense day of strikes on the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL), whose fighters still managed to capture a police station to the east of Kobane, a border Syrian city that is the centre of weeks-long battles.

The UK-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which monitors the Syrian civil war through a network of activists on the ground, said the station was later hit by coalition jets and destroyed.

Al Jazeera’s Yilmaz Akinci, reporting from Urfa at the Turkish borders, said air strikes, which went all through the night and in to the morning, destroyed an ISIL training camp, a building and two vehicles. The strikes also hit two ISIL combat units, our correspondent said.

“ISIL appear to have entered Kobane, but the biggest areas, the main areas, remain under the control of Kurdish fighters,” Al Jazeera’s Akinci said.

Turkish tanks face ISIL near Syria border

Turkish tanks face ISIL near Syria border

Their deployment of Monday came after ISIL fired shells near a refugee camp on Turkish soil. At least 15 tanks were positioned, some with their guns pointing towards Syrian territory.

Al Jazeera’s Stefanie Dekker, reporting from the Turkish border town of Suruc, said that three shells fell in Turkey, “very close to a refugee camp, security forces and a number of protesters who had gathered to express anger at what they say was limited support provided to Kuridsh fighters battling ISIL”.

More than 150,000 Syrian Kurds have streamed into Turkey since last week, as ISIL fighters pressed towards Ain al-Arab.

Russians rally against Moscow role in Ukraine

Protesters carried Russian and Ukrainian flags during anti-war rally in Moscow, the first large one since 2013 [EPA]

Thousands of Russians have rallied in Moscow in protest against the armed conflict in eastern Ukraine, in the first major anti-war rally since the standoff between Kiev and pro-Russian rebels started last year.

Russian and Ukrainian flags were seen flying in the crowd, as banners read “We are together”, “Putin, I’m sick of your lies” and “I don’t want a war with Ukraine.” Protesters were heard chanting “No to war.”

“Putin means war, he is the leader of the party of war,” one of the organisers and prominent Kremlin critic Boris Nemtsov said by phone. “If there are a lot of us today, he will back down, because he is afraid of his own citizens, and only the Russian people can stop Putin.”

The armed conflict, which Kiev and the West blame on Russia’s support of the separatist armed groups in eastern Ukraine, has killed more than 3,000 people since April.

A ceasefire agreement signed on September 5 has been repeatedly violated, and a memorandum signed on Saturday to create a buffer-zone between the warring sides, is hoped to consolidate the peace efforts.

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