The Syrian border town of Kobani saw some of the fiercest fighting in days on Sunday as ISIL militants attacked Kurdish defenders with mortars and car bombs.
The US has kept up its air strikes on ISIL positions and has even air-dropped weapons and medical supplies to the Kurdish forces – something which neighbouring Turkey has refused to contemplate.
Returning from a visit to Afghanistan, Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan told journalists it would be wrong for the United States – with whom Turkey is a friend and ally in NATO – to expect Turkey to say ‘Yes’ to supporting what he described as a ‘terrorist organisation’.
Ankara has watched as the Islamist extremists have advanced on Kobani. It accuses the Kurdish forces of having links with the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) which has waged a 30-year armed campaign for self-rule in Turkey.