Syria follows Kurdish example with creation of female army unit to fight ISIS

by WorldTribune Staff, February 3, 2017

The Syrian regime, well aware of the battlefield effectiveness of Kurdish female soldiers, has formed a women’s battalion of its own to fight Islamic State (ISIS).

Al-Masdar News, which is sympathetic to the Syrian regime, posted a video on Feb. 1 of several dozen women in combat fatigues and headscarves taking part in target practice and singing patriotic songs.

Fighters of the Khansawat Souria.

The battalion, named Khansawat Souria, is made up of around 150 women from towns in Qamishli in the north of the country. Since the Syrian conflict began, the region has been fought over by Kurdish, Syrian army and ISIS forces.

The Khansawat Souria is led by Ba’ath party member Jazya Tu’mah.

In 2012, Syrian Kurds formed the Women’s Protection Units (YPJ) to help fight off Islamist groups that moved in on Kurdish territory in Syria’s north. After their towns were liberated by the YPJ, dozens of Arab and Yazidi women joined fighting units, inspired by the YPJ’s example, the UK’s Independent reported.

The newly formed Syrian battalion appears to have been created in the style of the YPJ, the report said.

Meanwhile, a top ISIS bomb expert blew himself and a fellow jihadist up while trying to plant a roadside IED in Mosul, Iraq, Geopolmonitor reported on Jan. 2.

The bomb expert, Abu Abdullah, reportedly led a terror cell in Mosul that focused on rigging buildings and road sections in an effort to inflict casualties on Iraqi troops.

Local news outlets reported Abdullah’s death had been confirmed by an Iraqi security official.

The report said that another senior ISIS operative, Abu Abdel Rahman, was gunned down in the al-Askari neighborhood of Mosul, which ISIS still controls.

Earlier this week, Iraqi security and popular mobilization forces reportedly killed 42 Islamic State jihadists in the area.