The Kurdish female commander in charge of leading all women fighters against Islamic State in the battle over the border town of Kobane is calling on women throughout the world to help defeat the Islamic State and end its mistreatment of women.
While numerous Kurdish women are joining the battle against the Islamic State, the commander of the Women's Protection Unit of the Kurdish peshmerga defending Kobane, Meysa Abdo, wrote in an opinion piece for Wednesday's New York Times that her forces are in dire need of better weaponry and assistance from international governments.
Abdo, who is also known by her nom de guerre Narin Afrin, urges women from across the world to bring awareness to ISIS' atrocious cruelty toward women and religious minorities so they can persuade their governments to assist the Kurdish forces in protecting "the rights of women everywhere." more >>
The woman who became a poster girl of Kurdish resistance in the city of Kobane is actually alive, contrary to rumors spread by members of ISIS, who claimed to have beheaded her.
The woman, who went by the name Rehana, was seen as an image of hope in the city as it fought ISIS forces. An image of her giving the peace sign while dressed for battle went viral, making her an international symbol. Just two days ago, though, ISIS militants claimed to have captured Rehana and killed her by beheading. They sent photos of members holding her head high, alongside the ISIS flag.
Friends of Rehana have come forward to put an end to the rumors and state that Rehana made it out of Kobane and is living in southern Turkey, alive and well. more >>
Close to 200 Syrian rebels armed with mortars and heavy machine guns have joined the major battle against ISIS in the border town of Kobane, as the death count continues to mount on both sides.
Syrian rebel commander Col. Abdul Jabar Okaidi told CNN on Wednesday that more fighters can be recruited if required.
"Today, 200 is enough," he said. "But we can send more today if needed." more >>
A 25-year-old British mother is believed to have traveled to Syria, along with her 1-year-old baby son, to join Islamic State extremists in their Syrian stronghold of Raqqa, according to her family.
The father of Tareena Shakil, a young British mother who resided in Birmingham and holds a psychology degree, told the British news source The Sun that he's concerned for his baby grandson's safety after he learned that his daughter and her 14-month-old son have entered the Islamic State caliphate in Syria and don't plan on returning home.
After four months of posting extremist messages on a Facebook account Shakil had created under an Islamic pseudonym, Shakil's family said that she lied when she told them that she and her son, Zaheem, were going on a vacation to Spain. They learned that Spain was not her intended destination when Shakil sent messages back home to the family saying that she and Zaheem had instead crossed Turkey's porous border into Syria and that they are now in the ISIS Syrian stronghold of Raqqa. more >>
As Islamic State extremists continue their reign of terror through Iraq and Syria, the chaos, violence and persecution forced upon the thousands of people in the region has caused 90 percent of Orthodox Christians in Iraq to flee the sanctity of their homes, according to the Greek Orthodox Bishop for Baghdad, Ghattas Hazim.
Hazim, who is also the Greek Orthodox Bishop of Kuwait and other surrounding areas, said in a recent interview with Al Monitor that he fears for the future of the Orthodox Christian presence in Iraq, Syria, and the whole Mesopotamia region. Citing unspecified statistics, Hazim said that 90 percent of Iraqi Orthodox Christians have been displaced from their homes. He added that only 30 of 600 Orthodox families remain in Baghdad as ISIS' quest to conquer the city continues.
In Mosul, the Islamic State's stronghold in Iraq in the northern Nineveh province, Hazim said only 10 Orthodox families remain, although it's believed that the only Christians left in Mosul are those who could not afford to, or physically, flee. more >>
As many foreign fighters are becoming disillusioned by the Islamic State's atrocious violence and are considering fleeing the conflict to return to the safety of their homeland, ISIS leaders are using death threats and imprisonment to force the fighters to stay
An unnamed source with "extensive contacts among Syrian rebel groups" told British newspaper The Observer that there are dozens of radicalized British fighters who want to return to the U.K., but are being held in the caliph against their will by other ISIS militants.
"There are Britons, who, upon wanting to leave have been threatened with death, either directly or indirectly," the source said. more >>