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Syria: Kobani 'could face massacre' by ISIL

ISIL could repeat August's Sinjar massacre in which more than 20,000 Ezidis were killed, warns Syrian Kurdish leader Salih Muslim

24.09.2014
Syria: Kobani 'could face massacre' by ISIL

BRUSSELS

ISIL could carry out a massacre in the Syrian city of Kobani within hours, Syrian Democratic Union Party (PYD) Co-Chairman Salih Muslim has warned.

In a press conference on Wednesday at the European Parliament (EP) in Brussels, Muslim said that ISIL militants were just one kilometer away from Kobani and a massacre - similar to that which ISIL carried out in the Sinjar region of Syria last month in which more than 20,000 Ezidis are believed to have died - could take place within hours.

Muslim said that forces of the YPG – the armed wing of the PYD - could defend Kobani, but had insufficient weapons while the ISIL had long-range missiles, American Abran tanks and Humvee armored vehicles which they had confiscated during their incursion into Mosul.

He said U.S air raids on ISIL had come too late and were insufficient to save Kobani, said Muslim.

Meanwhile, the European Parliament Anti-terrorism Coordinator, Gilles De Kerchove, said that more than 3,000  foreign nationals had gone to Syria and Iraq from European countries to join ISIL and other groups.

Speaking to the EP Security and Defence Sub-committee, De Kerchove said: “We have seen foreign fighters before, however, the number was never this high."

 Hardened fighters

 The Soufan Group, which provides strategic security intelligence services to governments and multinational organizations, said recently in a report entitled Foreign Fighters in Syria that the fighters came from most member states of the European Union and also the United States, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.

Authored by Richard Barrett - a former British diplomat and intelligence officer who headed the United Nations Monitoring Team covering al-Qaeda and the Taliban from March 2004 to January 2013 - the report claimed that more than 12,000 foreign fighters from at least 81 countries were in Syria.

It states 700 fighters were from France, 400 from the United Kingdom, 100 from Denmark and 2,500 from Saudi Arabia.

The report said most fighters joined extremist groups, including the self-styled ISIL faction as they fought harder and were better resourced and motivated.

It added the overall flow of foreigners to the war had remained fairly constant since late 2011.

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