At Least 41 Killed in Major Battles Between al-Qaeda, Syrian Kurds

Al-Qaeda in Iraq Continues to Push Offensive Against Kurdish Towns

Another round of major battles has been reported in Syria’s northeastern Hassakeh Province, the Kurdish dominated part of the country, with Jabhat al-Nusra and al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) pushing into the territory belonging to Kurdish militias.

At least 41 people were killed in the fighting, according to reports 29 of them were members of the al-Qaeda factions and 12 others were Kurdish fighters. The toll is still preliminary and could yet rise further.

This is increasingly the face of Syria’s complicated civil war, where interest in controlling the areas along the Turkish border have led various competing rebel factions to turn on one another, and fighting the Assad government seems to be a low priority these days.

Al-Qaeda’s repeated attacks on West Kurdistan have escalated in recent months, and led Kurdish militias to issue full-scale calls to arms in an attempt to retain control over their own territory. The growing concerns of al-Qaeda infiltration into the region has Iraqi Kurdistan threatening to send its own troops into the region.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.