Al-Qaeda attacks Syrian Kurdish town, kills 18

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At least 18 people have been killed after al-Qaeda militants attacked the Kurdish town of Ras al-Ain in northeastern Syria. The incident took place after the foreign-backed militants assaulted the strategic border town, clashing with the Kurds in the area, reports said on Saturday. Most of the dead are Kurdish fighters. The attack forced a large crowd of civilians to flee into villages in the neighboring Turkey. Al-Qaeda-linked militants started attacks on several Kurdish-majority areas in northern and northeastern Syria on Friday. In July, Kurdish fighters took control of Ras al-Ain, after expelling al-Qaeda linked militants from the area. The terrorists have been launching assault on the city and other Kurdish-held areas of Syria. Elsewhere, the foreign-sponsored militants attacked a checkpoint in a Christian area of the western city of Homs, killing at least 11 people, including six civilians. "Terrorists today committed a massacre, killing 11 people ... in Homs countryside," the official SANA news agency quoted a Syrian official as saying. Many Christians escaping the crisis in the city of Homs have settled in Christian villages around the city, where the incident happened. A recent report said that the militants killed Italian priest, Paolo Dall'Oglio. He was in the city of Raqqa to demand the release of kidnapped people. Syria has been gripped by deadly unrest since 2011. According to reports, the Western powers and their regional allies -- especially Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and Turkey -- are supporting the militants operating inside Syria. According to the United Nations, more than 100,000 people have been killed and a total of 7.8 million of others displaced due to the violence.

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