Kurdish Fighters Kill 8 on Aleppo Clashes

10/02/2013 RUDAW By WLADIMIR van WILGENBURG – ERBIL,: –  Eight regime soldiers and fighters were killed in clashes with the Kurdish Popular Protection Units in Aleppo last Friday, a rights group reported.

The YPG, which is affiliated to the Democratic Union (PYD) killed three regular Syrian soldiers and five members of the pro-regime militia, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said.

“In the Kurdish district of Eshrefiye in Aleppo, the popular protection units (YPG) and the Syrian Army have been caught up in heavy fighting since late morning,”  said a statement by the PYD, which itself is affiliated to the militant Kurdistan Workers Party. “According to ground-based reports there have been a number of causalities, but we have yet to receive any final confirmation of the accurate number,” it said.The fighting follows the death of 20 civilians in bombing by the Syrian army bombing on January 31 in Eshrefiye. Clashes in Eshrefiye have continued since then, in which fighters on both sides have been killed, wounded or captured.

A Kurdish activist in Aleppo told Rudaw that pro-regime and Syrian army forces began attacking Eshrefiye and Sheikh Maqsoud after the arrival of fighters from the Free Syrian Army (FSA), the main opposition force fighting to topple President Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Thomas McGee, a scholar focusing on the Kurds of Syria, told Rudaw that the regime now controls a strategic road that links Eshrefiye to other parts of the country.