NEW: General says ISIS attacked areas of Sinjar mountain range
Deadly ISIS attacks targeted the Mosul Dam
In one, six Peshmerga troops were killed, a spokesman says
Turkey to allow Iraqi Peshmerga to cross into Syria to defend Kobani
ISIS militants launched about 15 near-simultaneous attacks on Kurdish forces in northern Iraq on Monday in what Kurdish government officials and the news agency Rudaw said was a fierce and renewed push for territory.
ISIS also launched attacks against Mosul Dam, a strategic prize, and also renewed its offensive on the Sinjar mountain range in northern Iraq.
An ISIS-commandeered military truck loaded with explosives targeted a Peshmerga checkpoint along the security belt circling the dam, killing six security force members and injuring seven others critically, according to Peshmerga spokesman Said Mamazeen.
At almost the same time, ISIS militants launched an attack on the Nineveh Valley near the dam, which was repelled by Peshmerga forces using European and American weapons, the spokesman said.
Another Kurdish military official, who asked not to be named for protocol and security reasons, said that despite the attacks, it would be difficult for ISIS to gain control of the dam because of the large numbers of Peshmerga forces in the area.
Attacks in Sinjar mountain range
A senior official at the Ministry of Peshmerga, who similarly asked not to be identified as a matter of government protocol, reported that ISIS fighters were also killed in the attacks, and that the Peshmerga successfully repelled most of the more than dozen incidents Monday.
ISIS fighters launched attacks on several areas of the Sinjar mountain range Monday, including the village of Sharaf ad-Din, which holds one of the most important shrines for the Yazidi community, Hazhar Ismail, brigadier general at the Ministry of Peshmerga, told CNN.
“ISIS failed in their attempt to control the village of Sharaf ad-Din after Peshmerga forces repelled the attack and managed to kill a number of ISIS militants,” Ismail told CNN.
ISIS fighters managed to seize two villages in an area close to Sharaf ad-Din, but these villages were unpopulated as a result of ISIS attacks in August, Ismail said.
Ismail said he expected coalition airstrikes against those villages in the near future.
On the Syrian front
Still under siege despite gains against ISIS, fighters defending the Syrian city of Kobani are getting more help, in addition to U.S. airstrikes.
U.S. military cargo planes dropped much-needed weapons, ammunition and medical gear in the dead of night Sunday.
And on Monday, Turkey’s foreign minister announced his country would let Kurdish Peshmerga from Iraq use Turkish territory to enter Syria and reinforce fighters in Kobani.
The help is desperately needed, Kobani officials say. Even though defenders control some 70% of the city, Kobani is cut off and ISIS forces continue to shell it with mortars from the east and south, said Anwar Muslim, a local government official in Kobani.
Tens of thousands of civilians have fled to Turkey as a result of weeks of intense fighting between Syrian Kurdish forces and the Free Syrian Army for control of Kobani, a border town that’s one of the last in the region to resist falling to ISIS.