SHAFAQNA (International Shia News Association)-A senior UN official has warned that thousands of people “will most likely be massacred” if the Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani along the border with Turkey falls into the hands of ISIL Takfiri militants.
“If this [town] falls, the 700 [civilians in the city], plus perhaps the 12,000 people [gathered nearby], apart from the fighters, will be most likely massacred,” the United Nations’ envoy to Syria, Staffan de Mistura, said on Friday.
De Mistura further noted that he feared a repeat of the 1995 massacre in Srebrenica, when Bosnian Serb forces marched into the town, and shot dead more than 8,000 Muslim men and boys at execution sites.
“Do you remember Srebrenica? We do. We never forgot and probably we never forgave ourselves,” the top UN envoy pointed out, adding, “When there is an imminent threat to civilians, we cannot, we should not, be silent.”
He also urged the Turkish government to allow Kurdish volunteers to cross the border into Kobani and defend it against ISIL militants.
According to the so-called Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, which is close to the Syrian opposition, ISIL forces pushed forward on Thursday, and now control at least 40 percent of Kobani, including all eastern areas, a small part of the northeast and an area in the southeast.
However, local Kurdish officials say the Takfiri militants are in control of a small part of the strategic border town.
Kurdish officials also say airstrikes carried out by the US-led coalition against ISIL positions in Syria are not working.
Kobani and its surroundings have been under attack since mid-September, with ISIL militants capturing dozens of nearby Kurdish villages.
The weeks-long intense battle for the strategic town has forced nearly 200,000 people to take refuge in Turkey.