'Major defeat' for ISIS
BEIRUT – Kurdish fighters backed by intense U.S.-led airstrikes pushed the Islamic State group entirely out of a key Syrian town on Monday, marking a major defeat for the extremists whose hopes for an easy victory when they pushed into Kobani last year dissolved into a bloody, costly and months-long siege.
As their victory neared, the Kurdish troops earlier in the day raised their flag on a hill overlooking the town just across the border with Turkey, replacing the Islamic State group's black banner.
The battlefield success is a major conquest both for Syria's embattled Kurds and the U.S.-led coalition, whose American coordinator had predicted that the Islamic State group would "impale itself" on Kobani.
The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights and Kobani-based Syrian activist Farhad Shami said the Islamic State, also known as ISIS or ISIL, had been fully expelled, with some sporadic fighting on the ouster eastern edges of the town.