The Syrian Kurdish town of Kobani is “about to fall” to ISIS militants, Turkey's president Tayyip Erdogan said Tuesday as the extremists continued a three-week assault that has cost a reported 400 lives and forced thousands to flee their homes. The prospect that the town could be captured has increased pressure on Turkey to join an international coalition to fight against the jihadists. ISIS wants to take Kobani — six miles from the Turkish border — to consolidate the territorial gains it has made in Iraq and Syria in recent months. U.S.-led air strikes have so far failed to prevent the town from being besieged, and the extremists’ black flag was seen flying over key buildings on Monday.
"The problem of ISIS... cannot be solved via air bombardment. Right now ... Kobani is about to fall," Erdogan said during a visit to a Syrian refugee camp. "We had warned the West. We wanted three things. No-fly zone, a secure zone parallel to that, and the training of moderate Syrian rebels," he said. Secretary of State John Kerry and Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu had spoken twice in recent days to discuss the situation, State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said. "Turkey is determining what larger role they will play," Psaki told a daily briefing.