Fighting continues to rage over the Kurdish border town of Ayn al-Arab in northern Syria Thursday, with ISIS continuing its advance and engaging in close-quarters combat with Kurdish militias.
The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that 9 of the Kurdish fighters were captured by ISIS and beheaded, and images emerged claiming to show the heads of display in nearby Jarablous.
ISIS has been pushing toward Ayn al-Arab for weeks now, seizing large numbers of Kurdish villages along the way. They reportedly seized another village today. The fight has attracted a lot of Kurdish militia fighters from Syria and Turkey trying to retain control of the city.
South of Ayn al-Arab, ISIS fighters have also reportedly surrounded the tomb of Suleyman Shah, an ancestor of the founder of the Ottoman Empire. By treaty, the tomb is considered Turkish soil, and Turkey has threatened to send troops to defend it. With ISIS advancing on Ayn al-Arab this could quickly escalate into a major ground conflict between the Turkish military and ISIS.
Meanwhile U.S. and allied warplanes hit IS gatherings in the east and south of the city. Information reported casualties among IS fighters due to these clashes and aerial strikes. 8 Terrorist from IS were killed while a tank was destroyed due to Coalition aerial strikes on the east and south of Ayn al Arab.