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Kurds take to streets to protest Islamic State assault on Kobani

Tuesday, October 07, 2014 - 00:40

Kurds in the southeast Turkish province of Cizre clash with police as they protest against an Islamic State assault on the border town of Kobani. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

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Kurds clashed with police in the south-eastern province of Cizre on Monday night (October 6), after Turkey's pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party called for nation-wide street demonstrations to protest an Islamic State assault on Kobani, where the situation was described as "extremely critical". Protesters blocked the streets, stopped cars and conducted identification checks as they let off fireworks and opened fire into the air. They hurled petrol bombs at armoured police vehicles as riot officers retaliated with tear gas and smoke grenades. Islamic State fighters advanced into the south west of the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani overnight, a monitoring group said on Tuesday (October 7), taking several buildings to gain attacking positions from two sides of the city. Two Islamic State flags were still visible over the eastern side of Kobani, Reuters journalists viewing from across the nearby Turkish border said. Turkey has so far made no move to join the fight against Islamic State close to its borders, beyond returning fire at Islamic State fighters in response to mortar shells landing on Turkish territory. Over the weekend, President Tayyip Erdogan vowed to retaliate if Islamic State attacked Turkish forces, and on Monday Turkish tanks deployed along the border for the second time in a week, some with guns pointing towards Syria, apparently in response to stray fire. Still, Islamic State's release last month of 46 Turkish hostages, and a parliamentary motion last week allowing Turkish troops to cross into Syria and Iraq, have raised expectations that Ankara may be planning a more active role. But Ankara is wary of helping Syrian Kurdish forces near Kobani as they have strong links with the PKK, which the Turkish state fought for three decades.

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Kurds take to streets to protest Islamic State assault on Kobani

Tuesday, October 07, 2014 - 00:40