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Bolstered by intensified U.S.-led coalition airstrikes targeting militants from ISIS, Kurdish militiamen fought pitched street battles Wednesday with the extremists in a Syrian Kurdish border town near Turkey, making small advances, activists and officials said.U.S.-led airstrikes have killed "several hundred" jihadists fighters in and around Ain al-Arab, known in Kurdish as Kobani, but ISIS could still seize the besieged strategic Syrian city. Members of the Kurdish People's Protection Units, or YPG, were making progress against Sunni militants, hours after the U.S.-led coalition stepped up airstrikes in and around the town, said Asya Abdullah, a Syrian Kurdish leader.In remarks underscoring the region's layered crises, Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc mocked the Kurdish fighters defending Ain al-Arab, comparing their struggle against ISIS to the guerrilla war of the affiliated Kurdish PKK rebels, who have fought a three-decade insurgency in Turkey, largely in mountainous regions in Turkey's east.Turkey launched airstrikes Tuesday against Kurdish rebels inside its borders, defying please from the U.S. to instead focus on ISIS.
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