Kurdish fighters seize key district in battle against Isis in Kobani

Kurdish officials say they now control 80 percent of the besieged Syrian border town

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The Independent Online

Kurdish fighters captured a vital area of Kobani on Monday, as the battle against Islamic State militants in Syria continues.

Kobani official Idriss Nassan and the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said Syrian Kurdish forces had captured the town's "security quarter", an area of Kobani which houses the police headquarters and other government buildings.

Isis took control of the zone on October 10 but have been losing parts of the area to the Kurds ever since. The Kurdish counteroffensive has slowly been advancing in Kobani with the help of Iraq's peshmerga forces as well as the US-led coalition.

US Central Command said that eight airstrikes had struck two large Isis units and an Isis fighting position in the town on Sunday.

Nassan and the Observatory said Syrian Kurdish fighters now control about 80 percent of the town. Nassan added that Isis still have control of two eastern neighbourhoods, Maqtala and Kani Kordan, but he added that "hopefully within days" the Kurds would control the whole of Kobani.

"The advance has become faster and the airstrikes are more intense," he told the AP.

The besieged Syrian border town has been under attack by Isis since mid-September, when it captured part of the town. Kurdish fighters have been making up ground in Kobani since late October.

Additional reporting by the AP.