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Fleeing ISIS, Syrian Kurds Swarm into Turkey

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Late last week, ISIS fighters attacked a Kurdish city in northern Syria, after seizing 21 nearby villages in a major assault. The attack on the city of Ayn al-Arab, known as Kobani in Kurdish, drove hundreds of thousands of residents to flee, most heading to the nearby border with Turkey. The Associated Press is reporting that more than 150,000 Syrian Kurds have entered Turkey since the border was opened to refugees on September 19, and the United Nations warns that number could soon climb as high as 400,000. Turkey is already housing more than one million Syrians who have fled the years-long conflict between government troops, rebel soldiers, and jihadist groups. Some of the Kurdish men who escorted their families into Turkey are now trying to return home to defend Kobani, but are finding themselves blocked at the border. As the U.S. and coalition partners begin air strikes against ISIS targets inside Syria, here are images of those recently driven out by the Islamic militant group. [28 photos]

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Syrian Kurds cross the border from Syria into Turkey at the southeastern town of Suruc in Sanliurfa province, on September 23, 2014. UNHCR, the United Nations refugee agency, warned that as many as 400,000 people may flee to Turkey from Syria's Kurdish region to escape attacks by ISIS militants. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)
Syrian Kurds cross the border from Syria into Turkey at the southeastern town of Suruc in Sanliurfa province, on September 23, 2014. UNHCR, the United Nations refugee agency, warned that as many as 400,000 people may flee to Turkey from Syria's Kurdish region to escape attacks by ISIS militants. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images)
Turkish soldiers stand guard as Syrians wait behind the border fences near the Turkish town of Suruc on September 18, 2014. Thousands of men, women and children arrived at the Turkish border roughly 10 km (6 miles) from the besieged city of Ayn al-Arab, known as Kobani in Kurdish, a Reuters witness said, as Turkish forces initially stopped the crowd from crossing. (Reuters/Kadir Celikcan) #
Syrian refugees wait to cross into Turkey at the border near Suruc, Turkey, on September 22, 2014. On September 19, permission was granted from Ankara, and Turkey opened part of its border to Syria to the refugees. (Getty Images) #
A Syrian Kurdish woman crosses the border between Syria and Turkey on September 23, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
Syrian Kurds throw a dead sheep as they protest asking for water for their animals on the Syrian side of the border with Turkey at the southeastern town of Suruc on September 23, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
Turkish soldiers stand guard as Syrian Kurds wait behind the border fence near the southeastern town of Suruc on September 22, 2014. (Reuters/Murad Sezer) #
Syrian Kurds cross the border from Syria into Turkey near the town of Suruc on September 20, 2014. Tens of thousands of Syrian Kurds flooded into Turkey, fleeing an onslaught by the jihadist ISIS group. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
Syrians rest after crossing in to Turkey near the Syrian border on September 21, 2014, in Sanliurfa province. (Getty Images) #
Syrian Kurds wait near the Syrian border on September 20, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
A Syrian Kurdish refugee waits after crossing the border near Suruc on September 21, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
A Syrian Kurdish girl looks at the Turkish police (unseen) as she crosses the border between Turkey and Syria on September 21, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
Protection of the Kurdish People (YPG) fighters clash with possible ISIS targets near the Syrian side of the Turkish border near Suruc on September 22, 2014. (Getty Images) #
Smoke rises after Protection of the Kurdish People (YPG) fighters hit a target as they clash with possible ISIS fighters near the Syrian side of the Turkish border on September 22, 2014. (Getty Images) #
A Turkish soldier gives a bottle of water to a handicapped Syrian refugee waiting at the border in Suruc, Turkey, on September 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici) #
Turkish soldiers walk as several hundred Syrian refugees wait to enter at the border in Suruc on September 21, 2014. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici) #
A Syrian boy who sustained injuries in a mine blast receives first aid from Turkish medics on September 22, 2014. (Reuters/Murad Sezer) #
Syrian refugees try to cross the border with their animals in Suruc, Turkey, on September 20, 2014. (AP Photo) #
Riot police use water cannons to disperse Kurdish demonstrators who were clashing with Turkish security forces, as thousands of Syrian refugees continue to arrive at the border in Suruc, Turkey, on September 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici) #
Riot police use teargas to disperse Kurdish demonstrators who were clashing with Turkish security forces as thousands of Syrian refugees continue to arrive at the border on September 22, 2014. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici) #
Kurdish protestors clash with Turkish soldiers near the Syrian border after Turkish authorities temporarily closed the border, blocking young Syrian Kurds who had accompanied their families to safety inside Turkey from returning to the battlefront, on September 22, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
A Turkish soldier fires during clashes with Kurdish people after Turkish authorities temporarily closed the border on September 21, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
Kurdish people clash with Turkish soldiers near the Syrian border after Turkish authorities temporarily closed the border on September 21, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
A Kurdish man bleeds after being injured while walking in the center of Suruc during clashes between protestors and Turkish riot policemen near the Syrian border on September 22, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
Kurdish protestors clash with Turkish soldiers near the Syrian border after Turkish authorities temporarily closed the border, blocking young Syrian Kurds who had accompanied their families to safety inside Turkey from returning to the battlefront, on September 22, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
A man walks past a burning car as Kurdish protestors clashed with Turkish soldiers on September 22, 2014. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
Dalil Boras, a 19-year-old Kurdish militant who has been fighting the Islamic State group in Syria, speaks to the Associated Press in Suruc, Turkey, on September 21, 2014. Dalil brought his family over the border to Turkey to safety Sunday. But in the tranquility of a Turkish tea garden a few miles from the border, he vowed to head back to the fight Sunday night. (AP Photo/Burhan Ozbilici) #
Syrian refugees gather at the border in Suruc, Turkey, on September 20, 2014. (AP Photo) #
Syrian Kurds carry their belongings after crossing the Syrian-Turkish border at the southeastern town of Suruc in Sanliurfa province on September 23, 2014. The UN refugee agency warned Tuesday that as many as 400,000 people may flee to Turkey from Syria's Kurdish region to escape attacks by the ISIS militant group. (Bulent Kilic/AFP/Getty Images) #
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