Kurdish Forces Seize North Syrian Town From ISIS

Town of Sarrin Was Key to Previous Kobani Offensives

Kurdish YPG forces are claiming a major victory today over ISIS in the Aleppo Province of northern Syria, saying they have taken the town of Sarrin, along the Euphrates River, from the Islamist forces, and are holding a key hill in the town.

Sarrin is comparatively small, only a few thousand people, but has been a staging point for ISIS in previous offensives against the Kurdish city of Kobani, and its capture seemingly makes the city more defensible than it had previously been.

What happens next remains to be seen, but concerns of another violent purge of locals must be growing tonight, as Kurdish fighters said the attack on the town was to avenge the ISIS bombing in the Turkish town of Suruc, and that they will “avenge our martyrs” in Sarrin.

As with most YPG gains in the area around Kobani, the Kurdish forces were backed by US airstrikes. The Turkish government has repeatedly complained about this, noting they classify the YPG as a terrorist organization and don’t want the US propping them up as a huge force in northern Syria.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for Antiwar.com. He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.