There were clashes between the Kurdish YPG and FSA/Islamist groups in Efrin, Kobani, Abu Racine, Tal Tamr and Ras al-Ain on Monday. There were already fights between Liwa al-Tawheed and YPG on Thursday. Jahbat al-Nusra, Liwa Tawheed, Liwa al-Fatih, Islamic State Batallion, Yusuf al-Azimi [Kurdish, part of Kurdish Military Council], Salahdin Eyubi brigade of Bewar Abdullah [Kurdish, part of Kurdish Military Council] involved in fighting with YPG.

Most likely it will lead to hostage takings, some days of fighting, until they reach an agreement. The Syrian rebels will blame the YPG for working with Assad, while the PYD/YPG media most likely claim the Syrian rebels are carrying out Turkish plans and calling them mercenaries. Moreover, they could link it to their Kurdish rivals and the KDP, since the fighting follows earlier tensions between the KDP-funded parties and YPG/PYD. According to pro-PKK sources, at least 4 YPG members were killed in Ras al-Ain (Serekani) and Kobani (Ayn al-Arab). Pro-PKK sources at least 15 Syrian rebels were killed in Efrin. Moreover, the pro-PYD media claims the attacks preceded a meeting between different Syrian rebels groups and especially Liwa al-Tawheed in Al-Azzaz and that they killed 28 ‘FSA’ fighters. But this numbers cannot be confirmed. However, Besam Mustafa of Yousef al-Azimi brigade told Rudaw 15 YPG-were killed, while 2 of his friends were killed, and 5 wounded. All of these numbers cannot be verified nor trusted, but it confirms fighting took place. AFP also reported 11 got killed and 20 wounded quoting SOHR. Moreover, it is most likely related to earlier tensions between Islamist brigades and the popular committees in the Alawite villages of al-Zahraa and Nubul, where the YPG tried to negotiate before but failed.

AFP reported:

A YPG militant told AFP that the fighting erupted when the pro-Muslim Brotherhood armed group, Liwa al-Tawhid, “stormed our village and demanded they take over one of our checkpoints”. “They accused YPG fighters of allowing resident of Nabel (a majority Shiite village) safe passage across the checkpoints,” the Kurdish militant said.

Clashes renewed between the YPG and rebels in the village of Basla, by Shirawa; there are reports that rebels have taken tens of civilians captive (4 confirmed from Basla village, 2 from the Efrin-Aleppo road). the Efrin-Aleppo road is not running due to the clashes. Rebels put up a checkpoint by the town of Darat Izza the denied students the right to cross and were unable to attend their final exams. Regime forces targeted the farming machines used to sow the crops around Tel Eran, causing their destruction and the burning of the crops southwest of Tel Aran.

Clashes are taking place between the YPG and rebel fighters by the Tel Halaf checkpoint in the city of Serekaniyeh (Ras al-Ein). Reports that 4 rebels were killed after they stormed the YPG checkpoint in the village of B’eirir, near the town of Abu Rasein between Ras al-Ein and Tel Nimir. this comes at a time when sporadic clashes are also taking place around the Efrin area in Aleppo province between the YPG and rebels, reports that 1 YPG fighter was recently killed

Courtesy Transnational middle East Observer / Van Wilgenburg