US Planes Bomb Jihadists As Food Aid Dropped

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Water bundles align a C-17 Globemaster III cargo plane at Al Udeid Air Base, Qatar, prior to a humanitarian air drop over Iraq

US warplanes have bombed Islamist fighters in northern Iraq for a second time – as 30,000 meals were dropped for refugees.

Aircraft  launched a second round of strikes on Islamic State (IS) targets in northern Iraq after President Barack Obama said Washington must act to prevent “genocide”.

Islamic State fighters, who have beheaded and crucified captives, have advanced to within a half an hour of Irbil, Iraq’s Kurdish capital and a hub for US oil companies.

They have also seized control of Iraq’s biggest dam, which could allow them to flood cities and cut off vital water and electricity supplies.

Iraq’s government says hundreds of women from the Yazidi religious minority have been taken captive by fighters for IS, formerly known as ISIS.

The Pentagon said two F/A-18 aircraft from an aircraft carrier in the Gulf had dropped laser-guided 500-pound bombs on the fighters’ artillery.

Other airstrikes had targeted mortar positions and an Islamic State convoy.

For the second night, the US also dropped relief supplies to members of the ancient Yazidi sect.

Tens of thousands of them are massed on a desert mountaintop seeking shelter from fighters who have ordered them to convert or die.

dropped the supplies – including 72 bundles which contained 28,224 individually packaged meals.

Another 16 bundles contained 1,522 gallons of fresh drinking water.

Mr Obama has authorised the first US airstrikes on Iraq since he pulled all troops out in 2011.

The action is aimed at halting the Islamist advance, protecting hundreds of thousands of Christians and other religious minorities who have fled for their lives.

skynews

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