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Villagers Near Kobani Live in Constant Fear of IS Shelling

Villagers Near Kobani Live in Constant Fear of IS Shelling
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Near Kobani, the Islamic State group controls a number of villages west of the Euphrates River. From there, the group has been firing heavy weapons into the villages on the eastern side of the river — a daily barrage that terrorizes residents.

In one village on the western side of Kobani district, which has a mixed population of Arabs and Kurds, residents say they live in constant fear of rocket fire.

Security official Esmat Sehin, describing what people in this and nearby villages go through every day, said that "yesterday, they launched some rockets toward us, and the smell made us dizzy. Residents of Gire Ibre village are not able to sleep because of that smell. Three days ago, a resident of Hamadashan village was killed by a mortar."

Residents fear these weapons are chemical weapons because of their bad smell and the fact that they cause shortness of breath.

"Every day, IS launches these weapons from the other side of the Euphrates," said resident Heji Musa. "Three days ago, a mortar fell on a house here and injured two people."

Because these areas are within the range of Islamic State weapons, people cannot go about their daily lives without exposing themselves to the fire.

Local resident Hanifi Ibo said that the mortar shells fall near his house and that he does not know when one of them is going to hit.

"At night, we are not able to sleep because of these mortars," he said. "A child of my neighbor was killed. A few days ago, some mortars hit the east side and some of them hit the west side, and one resident was wounded. I can tell you, on a daily basis, seven to 10 mortars are fired. We are not able to do anything. We do not know when we are going to die."