Syria Clashes Kill More Then 40 Fighters

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SYRIA
In this image taken from video obtained from the Shaam News Network, which has been authenticated based on its contents and other AP reporting, smoke billows amid buildings at a bomb explosion in Daraya, a countryside of Damscus, Syria, Tuesday, Oct. 15, 2013. Syrian warplanes bombed several rebel-held areas Tuesday and opposition fighters fired mortar rounds and homemade rockets at Damascus on the first day of a major Muslim holiday, activists said. (AP Photo/Shaam News Network via AP Video) | AP

BEIRUT -- BEIRUT (AP) — Syrian activists say that two days of heavy clashes between Kurdish fighters and al-Qaida-linked rebels in the northeast have killed at least 41 on both sides.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights says the clashes in Hassakeh province pitted Kurdish militias against rebels from two al-Qaida-linked factions — Jabhat al-Nusra and the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant.

Such rebel infighting has become common in recent months in the northeast, which has a large Kurdish population.

Observatory's director Rami Abdul-Rahman said Wednesday that 29 of the dead are from the two extremist groups, while the remaining 12 are Kurdish fighters.

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