ISIS pushes forward on Kobane

Al Jazeera reports: The Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant is continuing to push its attempts to control a key Syrian border town despite resistance from local fighters and US-led air attacks.

Fighting raged on Saturday between ISIL and Kurdish fighters in Kobane, with artillery fire pounding the southwestern areas, a day after ISIL fired at least 80 mortar rounds into the town and advanced to its outskirts.

Al Jazeera’s correspondent Bernard Smith said he could hear artillery bursts and gunfire from his position in Suruc in Turkey, about 6km from Kobane.

An Al Jazeera correspondent reported that ISIL on Friday night attempted four times to storm the town from the east side, but US-led air attacks stopped the advances and killed dozens of its fighters.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, a UK-based group, said the attacks hit at least four areas, killing 35 ISIL fighters and destroying some materiel. Al Jazeera cannot independently verify the report.

Juan Cole adds: Ismat Sheikh, commander of the Kurdish forces at the border town of Kobane (Ain al-Arab) that is besieged by ISIL tanks and artillery, says that he expects massacres of its inhabitants if it falls to the Sunni Arab extremists.

He warned that ISIL fighters are less than a mile from his front line.

Despite US air strikes, ISIL has drawn up some 25 tanks and a number of artillery pieces to pound Kobane repeatedly.

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