Islamic State group jihadists were in control Thursday of more than one-third of the Syrian border town of Kobane after pushing back its Kurdish defenders, a monitoring group said.
"Despite fierce resistance from the Kurdish forces, IS advanced during the night and controls more than a third of Kobane," Rami Abdel Rahman, director of the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, told AFP.
He said a Kurdish militia leader and several of his men were killed when jihadists captured a building they were using as a base in the northeast of the town.
The advance of IS fighters came despite intensified US-led air strikes aimed at preventing Kobane from falling into the hands of the jihadists.
The town, also known as Ain al-Arab, would be a major prize for the IS group, giving it unbroken control of a long stretch of Syria's border with Turkey.