Obama authorises air strikes in Iraq

2014-08-07 22:57:32 | Al Muslim News
Obama authorises air strikes in Iraq

 

US President Barack Obama has authorised targeted air strikes against Sunni fighters in Iraq, saying the measure was meant to avert "genocide" in the country. "We can act, carefully and responsibly to prevent a potential act of genocide," Obama said on Thursday, referring to a religious minority group besieged by fighters from the so-called Islamic State. "I therefore authorised targeted air strikes if necessary to help forces in Iraq as they fight to break the siege and protect the civilians trapped there," he said. Obama did not, however, confirm or deny whether the US had already carried out air strikes in Iraq as claimed by a spokesman for the Kurdish peshmerga force. "F-16s first entered Iraqi airspace on a reconnaissance mission and are now targeting Daash (Islamic State) in Gwer and in the Sinjar region," Holgard Hekmat told the AFP news agency earlier. The Kurdish official said: "They just struck the bridge linking Mosul to Gwer. The bridge had been used by Daash to channel reinforcements and ammunition to Gwer."Obama's announcement came hours after the United Nations Security Council condemned the recent attacks by the Islamic State group in Iraq and called for international support for the country. "The members of the Security Council call on the international community to support the government and people of Iraq and to do all it can to help alleviate the suffering of the population affected by the current conflict in Iraq," Britain's UN Ambassador Mark Lyall Grant, president of the council for August, said after a meeting of the 15-member body on Thursday..

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