Sakine Arat, right, and Mayrem Bulut are Kurdish mothers camping out between Turkish amry forces and the Kurdish PKK militants, in hopes of preventing clashes. "Mothers on both sides should be doing this," says Arat, 80. Peter Kenyon/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Peter Kenyon/NPR

People gather outside a damaged building after clashes in Silvan between Turkish security forces and members of the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) youth wing last week. Sertac Kayar/Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Sertac Kayar/Reuters/Landov

Iraqi Kurdish singer Helly Luv sings in support of Kurdish fighters, called the peshmerga, who are battling the Islamic State. Her songs are popular among Kurds in northern Iraq, though some critics say her outfits and dancing are un-Islamic. Safin Hamed/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Safin Hamed/AFP/Getty Images

Syrian Kurds from Kobani wait behind the border fences to cross into Turkey on Friday. An attack by Islamic State fighters on the Syrian town of Kobani and a nearby village has so far killed at least 146 civilians, the second-biggest massacre by the hardline group in the country, a conflict monitor said on Friday. Murad Sezer/Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Murad Sezer/Reuters/Landov

Kurdish Peshmerga fighters are separated from Islamic State extremists by only short distances in some places around Mosul in northern Iraq, but there has not been heavy fighting recently or any changes in the front lines. Alice Fordham/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Alice Fordham/NPR

Kurdish Peshmerga fighters take positions on the outskirts of Mosul on Jan. 26. The U.S. military says an offensive to drive the Islamic State out of Mosul is expected around April or May. Azad Lashkari/Reuters /Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Azad Lashkari/Reuters /Landov

Training at a new camp near the front line, a mix of Arabs and Kurds prepare for an assault on Mosul in upcoming months. The men will wear balaclavas to conceal their identities while they fight, because they have family in Mosul and don't want to put their relatives at risk. Ari Shapiro/NPR hide caption

itoggle caption Ari Shapiro/NPR

Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga fighters arrive Saturday in Sinjar in northern Iraq, where they have made gains against the Islamic State. The Kurds were talking about independence this summer, but now appear focused on fighting the Islamic State. Safin Hamed/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Safin Hamed/AFP/Getty Images

Iraqi Kurdish regional President Massoud Barzani speaks with the media at Mount Sinjar, in the town of Sinjar, on Sunday. Barzani was visiting an area that was recently retaken from ISIS militants. STRINGER/IRAQ/Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption STRINGER/IRAQ/Reuters/Landov

The Iraqi town of Halabja is dominated by Kurds, the group that has been fighting the Islamic State in northern Iraq. However, some Kurdish residents have been slipping away to join the Islamic State. Yahya Ahmad/Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Yahya Ahmad/Reuters/Landov

Iraqi Finance Minister Hoshyar Zebari announced Tuesday that the Iraqi government and the Kurdistan region have started implementing a deal under which Baghdad resumes funding Kurdish civil servant salaries in return for a share of Kurdish oil exports. Ali Abbas/EPA /LANDOV hide caption

itoggle caption Ali Abbas/EPA /LANDOV

An Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga fighter hold his position in the mountains east of Mosul. Jim Lopez/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Jim Lopez/AFP/Getty Images

An explosion following an airstrike is seen in the Syrian town of Kobani from near the Mursitpinar border crossing in the southeastern town of Suruc, in Turkey's Sanliurfa province, on Wednesday. Yannis Behrakis/Reuters/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Yannis Behrakis/Reuters/Landov

Three female members of Turkey's Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and an Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga fighter stand near the front line in Makhmur, in northern Iraq, on Aug. 9. The Turkish and Iraqi Kurds have been fighting together against the Islamic State. Safin Hamed/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Safin Hamed/AFP/Getty Images