Islamists kidnap 300 Kurds in northern Syria

Islamist fighters on Monday kidnapped some 300 Kurdish civilians at a checkpoint in northwestern Syria, Kurdish officials and a local journalist told AFP.

It was not immediately clear which group was responsible for the kidnapping, though Kurdish officials accused al-Qaeda’s affiliate Jadhat Al-Nusra, which is active in Idlib province.

“A group of 300 people on five coaches and a minibus coming from Afrin were kidnapped at a checkpoint as they went to Aleppo to collect their salaries,” said Newaf Khalil, a spokesman for the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD).

The kidnapping was confirmed by a second official from the PYD, the main Kurdish party in Syria, and a journalist in Afrin, who said the women in the group had been freed but the men and children taken.