Female Kurdish ‘poster girl’ fighter feared killed
A female Kurdish fighter, who has become the face of the Kurdish resistance fighting the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) to claim the town of Kobane, has been reportedly killed by the militant group, several media outlets claimed.
Rehana, a member of the Women’s Defense Unit, was reportedly beheaded by ISIS after a photo of her posing with a victory sign was tweeted by a journalist, Britain’s Daily Mail reported.
In the same tweet, the journalist claimed that Rehana, the nom de guerre she adopted as per female Kurdish fighter tradition, had already killed 100 militants fighting with ISIS.
As the tweet was retweeted more than 5,000 times, she became the poster girl of Kurdish resistance in Kobane.
Reports of her death circulated on social media after a photo of an ISIS militant holding her severed head was reportedly shared on Twitter.
The People’s Defense Unit, or the YPG, are yet to make a comment about the allegations, the British daily said.
The YPG is the de facto army of the Kurdish regions of north and northeast Syria, is the armed wing of the powerful Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD).
Kurdish women have been at the forefront in the battle against ISIS, as their numbers, already in the thousands, continues to grow.
According to Agence France-Presse, women traditionally form a major part of Kurdish fighting forces, and they are well represented among Kurdish forces in neighboring Turkey and Iraq.
On October 5, young Kurdish woman fighter Dilar Gencxemis, identified by the YPG by the nom-de-guerre of Arin Mirkan, blew herself up outside Kobane in an attack which reportedly killed dozens of IS militants.
The battle to claim Kobane has been raging for more than a month with fierce fighting between ISIS militants and Kurdish fighters backed by a an anti-ISIS U.S.-led coalition.