Kurdish female suicide bomber revealed to be mother of two

Arin Mirkan reportedly ran out of ammunition during a gun battle with ISIS on a hill outside of Kobane

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A female Kurdish fighter who carried out the suicide bomb attack on Sunday against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) in Kobane, also known as Ain-al-Arab, was a mother of two, London-based newspaper The Times reported on Tuesday.

Dilar Gnecxemis, whom the media calls Arin Mirkan, was a 20-year-old commander in the female wing of the People’s Protection Unit (YPG), which is an offshoot of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK). The PKK militia and politive movement - labeled a terrorist organization by the U.S. and the EU - has been operating in Turkey for more than three decades.

Mirkan reportedly ran out of ammunition during a gun battle with ISIS on a hill outside of Kobane, prompting her to detonate a grenade as she ran towards ISIS militants. Mirkan’s attack was the first reported instance of a female Kurdish fighter blowing herself up against the group – a tactic usually used by extremist Islamist factions such as ISIS or Syria’s Jabhat al-Nusra.

The news of the Mirkan suicide bomb attack took place on the same day as the reported suicide bombing of Ceylan Ozalp, 19, also near Kobane. According to news reports, Ozalp similarly ran out of ammunition and decided to spend her last bullet on killing herself instead of falling into the hands of ISIS.

Ozalp, more known her nom-de-guerre Diren, appeared on a BBC News last month where she said: “We’re not scared of anything…We’ll fight to the last. We’d rather blow ourselves up than be captured by IS (ISIS).”

“When they see a woman with a gun, they’re so afraid they begin to shake. They portray themselves as tough guys to the world. But when they see us with our guns they run away. They see a woman as just a small thing. But one of our women is worth a hundred of their men,” Ozalp told the BBC.

The deteriorating situation in Syria and the growing threat of ISIS fighters, who raised their black and white flag on the eastern edge of Kobane yesterday, pushed more Kurdish women to join the front lines, despite the danger that lies ahead of them.

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