World

Islamic State group fighters shell Syrian Kurdish town near Turkish border as clashes rage

  • A Turkish soldier takes his position a few hundreds meters from the  the Turkey-Syria border in Mursitpinar, near Suruc, Turkey, as fighting intensified between Syrian Kurds and the militants of Islamic State Sunday Oct. 5, 2014. Kobani and its surrounding areas have been under attack since mid-September, with militants capturing dozens of nearby Kurdish villages. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici)

    A Turkish soldier takes his position a few hundreds meters from the the Turkey-Syria border in Mursitpinar, near Suruc, Turkey, as fighting intensified between Syrian Kurds and the militants of Islamic State Sunday Oct. 5, 2014. Kobani and its surrounding areas have been under attack since mid-September, with militants capturing dozens of nearby Kurdish villages. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici)  (The Associated Press)

  • Turkish soldiers walk to their positions on a hill top at Mursitpinar near Suruc, at the Turkey-Syria border, overlooking Kobani in Syria as fighting intensified between Syrian Kurds and the militants of Islamic State group, Sunday, Oct. 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

    Turkish soldiers walk to their positions on a hill top at Mursitpinar near Suruc, at the Turkey-Syria border, overlooking Kobani in Syria as fighting intensified between Syrian Kurds and the militants of Islamic State group, Sunday, Oct. 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)  (The Associated Press)

  • Smoke rises after a shell landed in Kobani in Syria as fighting intensified between Syrian Kurds and the militants of Islamic State group, as seen from Mursitpinar near Suruc, at the Turkey-Syria border, Sunday, Oct. 5, 2014.  (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)

    Smoke rises after a shell landed in Kobani in Syria as fighting intensified between Syrian Kurds and the militants of Islamic State group, as seen from Mursitpinar near Suruc, at the Turkey-Syria border, Sunday, Oct. 5, 2014. (AP Photo/Lefteris Pitarakis)  (The Associated Press)

Activists say Islamic State militants are shelling a beleaguered Kurdish town in northern Syria on the Turkish border.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the extremists fired at least 10 rockets Sunday on the town of Kobani, also known as Ayn Arab. The militants are also firing tank shells and mortars as they try to break the Kurds' hold on the town.

The Observatory says heavy clashes overnight, as well as U.S.-led coalition airstrikes on Islamic State positions around Kobani, killed at least 16 militants. At least 11 Kurdish militiamen were also killed the in the fighting.

From the Turkish side of the border, the heavy thud of shelling could be heard Sunday from Kobani, and pillars of smoke billowed over the town.