European Dies Fighting Islamic State In Syria

A European, of either British or Greek nationality, has been killed while fighting Islamic State militants, alongside Kurdish forces, in northern Syria.

A European, fighting alongside Kurds in Syria, has been killed in clashes with hardline Islamic State militants, according to a group monitoring the conflict.

Britain said it was aware of reports the person was a British national.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said the combatant had been fighting alongside Kurdish YPG forces in Syria’s northern Hasakeh province and said he had died from wounds.

The Kurds, backed by US air strikes and local rebel fighters, have been pushing back Islamic State in northern Syria after the al-Qaeda offshoot captured large tracts of land along the border with Turkey. Iraqi Kurdish fighters entered Syria last year via Turkey to fight alongside their kinsmen.

It was not clear whether the man was a British national or a Greek man who had been living in Britain, the Observatory said. He had been wounded during clashes with Islamic State between the towns of Tal Hamis and al-Hol, it added.

“We are aware of reports of the death of a British national in Syria,” Britain’s Foreign Office said in a statement, adding that it had previously advised against all travel to Syria.

“As we do not have any representation in Syria, it is extremely difficult to get any confirmation of deaths or injuries and our options for supporting British nationals there are extremely limited,” it said.

The head of the Observatory, Rami Abdulrahman, who gathers information from a network of sources on the ground, said just over 100 Western fighters had joined the Kurds in Syria and included Americans, French, Spanish and Dutch among other nationalities.

Their numbers are small in comparison with foreign jihadist recruits to Islamic State and other hardline groups.

An Australian man fighting alongside Kurdish forces was killed in Syria last week, the Observatory and a Kurdish source said.

Categories: Middle East, World

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

%d bloggers like this: