The Islamic militant group commonly referred to as ISIS is notorious for never backing down but for the first time, they have admitted defeat in taking over the Syrian town of Kobani. However, the group has also promised the town would be attacked again.
In a released video from a news agency, two fighters stated the primary reason that ISIS fighters had to withdraw was because of airstrikes led by the US coalition. As of this morning, Kurdish officials claimed there are virtually no ISIS fighters left in the town where at one time, they had taken control of about 50% of the area.
One fighter for the militant group was heard calling the People’s Protection Units (YPG) rats while vowing to return and defeat the Kurdish militia. For the ISIS extremist group, being unable to take Kobani over was a serious blow. The group expected the takeover would be easy but they were quickly met by assault from the Kurdish militia coupled with US coalition led airstrikes.
One masked ISIS fighter told reporters that the group had retreated from Ayn al-Islam for a while because of being bombarded coupled with some brothers being killed. Positions within Syria known to be taken up by the Islamic State have been hit by the US, as well as several allies from Arab countries. The overall goal is to push the jihadi organization back after taking control of 33% of Syria and Iraq.
The same masked fighter claimed that the Islamic State will stay and that his statement can be taken back to President Obama. Last September, the group launched an offensive on the region of Kobani during which time over Kurdish 300 villages, as well as some areas of the town, were captured. It was this action that prompted the tough Kurdish resistance and airstrikes.
During the battle, an estimated 200,000 Kurds had to leave their homes with many people feeling to nearby Turkey. According to activists, the push back forced ISIS to start retreating several weeks ago and that more than 1,000 of their fighters had died. In addition to firing mortar shells that wounded innocent civilians, ISIS has carried out over 35 suicide attacks in the town of Kobani.
In a statement from another ISIS fighter, the warplanes left no construction, instead destroying everything in their path so while the “rats” advanced, the militants had no choice but to withdraw. He added that the area was being bombarded by planes literally day and night with everything being hit.
Since the beginning of the four-month long battle that began in September, Kurdish fighters claim the town of Kobani has been recaptured. Along with massive destruction, bodies of about 20 ISIS fighters were lined up to show people that the Kurds mean business. Whether the mission is truly successful remains to be seen but for now, things have quieted down.