ISIS hit with fresh airstrikes by US

 

U.S. and coalition warplanes struck Islamic State in Syria and Iraq (ISIS) fighters operating near the Syria-Turkish border on Saturday, as the aerial campaign against the terror network continued to expand.

Coalition planes targeted ISIS positions near the northern town of Kobani, U.S. Central Command confirmed. The town has been the site of fierce fighting between Kurdish and ISIS fighters, and thousands of refugees have fled the region because of the fighting.

The airstrikes reportedly destroyed two tanks controlled by the Islamist forces.

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On Friday, State Department spokesman Jeff Rathke said the U.S. was “deeply concerned” by reports that ISIS had seized dozens of Kurdish villages near the Turkish border.

“We are aware of reports of anywhere between 3,000 and 7,000 displaced Syrian Kurds gathering at the border with Turkey, and we understand from U.N. estimates that maybe up to 5,000 of them, mostly Kurds, are seeking to flee to Turkey,” Rathke said. “Turkey has continued to show great generosity, hosting nearly 850,000 refugees from Syria as well as 200,000 from Iraq.”

The strikes are the first to target ISIS outside of the stronghold provinces of Raqqa, Deir al-Zor and Hasakah.

Earlier Saturday, President Obama said in his weekly address that "America is leading the world in the fight to degrade and ultimately destroy the terrorist group known as [ISIS]."

This story was posted at 10:18 a.m. and updated at 6:11 p.m.