Car bomb kills 10 in Kurdish-held Syria town
BEIRUT – Agence France-Presse
REUTERS photoA car bomb killed at least 10 people on June 29 in a Syrian town near the Turkish border held by U.S.-backed Kurdish-led forces, a monitoring group said.
Another nine people were wounded in the attack in Tal Abyad, which was captured from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) by the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) and allied Arab groups in June last year, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.
The alliance was formalized in October 2015 into the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF), which then seized swathes of northern and northeastern Syria from ISIL with U.S. support.
An SDF official said the car bomb was detonated outside offices of the local administration on the town’s main street. He said nine people were killed.
The SDF is currently fighting the jihadists in the town of Manbij, across the Euphrates River to the west, threatening what was a key staging post on one of their few remaining entry routes.
Meanwhile, ISIL pushed back an offensive by U.S.-trained Syrian rebels on a key route linking jihadist territory in eastern Syria to Iraq, The Observatory said June 29.
The New Syrian Army, backed by U.S.-led coalition strikes, had advanced overnight on ISIL territory near the Albu Kamal border crossing and adjacent town.
The Observatory said the NSA had seized the small Al-Hamdan airbase nearby, but ISIL had recaptured it by the afternoon of June 29.
“The attack failed. They lost control of the airport,” said Observatory head Rami Abdel Rahman.
He said NSA units were still inside the oil-rich Deir Ezzor province where Albu Kamal lies, but had been forced to retreat.
NSA spokesman Muzahem al-Sallum confirmed that his group was no longer in control of the airport, but said it was preparing “the next phase” of their offensive.
“We retreated towards the desert around Albu Kamal,” he told AFP.