Jihadists hold 200 Syria Kurds

Jihadists hold 200 Syria Kurds

BEIRUT - Agence France-Presse
Jihadist groups linked to al-Qaeda have taken hostage around 200 Kurdish civilians after violent clashes with Kurdish militants in two villages of eastern Syria, a monitoring group said.

“Fighters of al-Nusra Front and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) have seized control of Tall Aren village in Aleppo province and are laying siege to another village nearby, Tall Hassel,” said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

“They have taken hostage around 200 civilians from the inhabitants of the two villages,” it said, without giving details on their demands.

 On July 30, the People’s Defense Units (YPG), the armed wing of the Democratic Union Party (PYD), has issued a call to arms to battle jihadists after a Kurdish politician was killed on July 30 after weeks of clashes with radical Islamists.

“We call on the Kurdish people... to step forward... anyone fit to bear arms should join the ranks of the YPG and face the assaults of these [jihadist] armed groups,” said a YPG statement. That raised to new heights Kurdish resentment against the main opposition National Coalition and mainstream rebel Free Syrian Army (FSA).