As intense fighting between Islamic State militants and Kurdish fighters continues as it has for several weeks, a group of Peshmerga fighters from Iraq are crossing into bordering Turkey to join the fight to defeat ISIL. CCTV America’s Michal Bardavid reports.
With joyful faces, Iraqi Peshmerga fighters, are greeted in Sanliurfa, Turkey. Kurds have been waiting anxiously for the convoy’s arrival, waving flags and cheering loudly. The Iraqi group is headed for the Syrian border town of Kobane to join forces with Kurdish fighters.
The arrival of Peshmerga fighters has given hope to many Kurds who believe it could have an impact on the fate of Kobane. U.S.-led airstrikes have slowed the advancement of ISIL fighters in Kobane thus far.
“Until now Kurds were just defending themselves with light weapons. With the heavy weapons that the Peshmerga fighters will bring, they will be able to better defend Kobane. Kurds will be victorious, I believe that. We will declare victory,” a Kurdish Turkish citizen said.
Under pressure to take greater action against the ISIL militants — from the West as well as from Kurds in Turkey and Syria — the Turkish government agreed to let the fighters cross through its territory. But it only is allowing the Peshmerga forces from Iraq, with whom it has a good relationship, and not those from the Kurdistan Workers’ Party, or PKK.
The U.S.-led coalition’s operation against Islamic fighters is proving to be a difficult one. For more than a month Kobane has been under assault from Islamic fighters, and weeks of air strikes have failed to break the siege. Many hope the arrival of Peshmerga fighters on the ground, along with their heavier weapons, will be the turning point.
Peshmerga fighters arrive in Kobane via TurkeyAs intense fighting between Islamic State militants and Kurdish fighters continues as it has for several weeks, a group of Peshmerga fighters from Iraq are crossing into bordering Turkey to join the fight to defeat ISIL. CCTV America’s Michal Bardavid reports.
For more on the assault on Kobane, and Peshmerga fighters battling ISIL, CCTV America interviewed the former U.S. Ambassador to Bahrain Adam Ereli.