Pentagon Lacks Estimate on Size of IS Forces in Kobani

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The US military does not know how many Islamic State (IS) militants are currently attacking Kobani, a Syrian town that borders Turkey, Pentagon Press Secretary said.

WASHINGTON, October 17 (RIA Novosti) - The US military does not know how many Islamic State (IS) militants are currently attacking Kobani, a Syrian town that borders Turkey, Pentagon Press Secretary said.

"We don't have a good estimate," Defense Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby said on Thursday, in response to a question on the size of IS forces in Kobani.

Kirby said that the reason why the United States intensified its air campaign in Kobani was due to IS's expanding footprint.

Kirby added that the group's expansion in Kobani would provide more targets, which in the past week included snipers and other fighters along with strategic facilities like refineries.

"What makes Kobani significant is the fact that ISIL wants it. The more they want it, the more forces and resources they apply to it, the more targets are available for us to hit there," Kirby added.

For the past several weeks Kobani, also known as Ayn al-Arab, one of the largest towns in the Kurdish region of Syria bordering Turkey, has been under attack of the IS militants.

The IS, also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS), or the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), has been fighting against the government in Syria since 2012 and advanced into portions of northern Iraq in June 2014. The extremist group announced in June the establishment of an Islamic caliphate over its captured territories.

In September, US President Barack Obama announced the formation of an international coalition, which currently includes over 60 countries, to fight the IS. The coalition has been launching airstrikes against IS targets in Iraq and Syria.

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