A member of the Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) aims a weapon mounted on a pick-up truck towards areas controlled by Islamic State fighters in the southern countryside of Ras al-Ain November 7, 2014. REUTERS/Rodi Said
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Western and Arab powers that have deployed airstrikes to prevent the Syrian town of Ain al-Arab falling to ISIS must be ready to help another Kurdish enclave that is also surrounded by jihadist fighters, a local leader said Friday.Two hundred kilometers to the west lies Afrin, which, like Kobani, is one of three Kurdish regions that declared itself autonomous from the Syrian government earlier this year.The ISIS offensive against Ain al-Arab changed all that, however, and Afrin, home to more than 1 million people, including 200,000 refugees, may be next, Mustefa said.The Kurdish administration believes the group is gathering forces to attack.Ankara is strongly opposed to the autonomy of Syria's Kurds, fearing it could stir up separatist feelings within Turkey's own 15 million-strong Kurdish population and saying it threatens the unity of Syria.
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