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Rediff.com  » News » US airdrops aid, conducts airstrikes in besieged Iraqi town

US airdrops aid, conducts airstrikes in besieged Iraqi town

August 31, 2014 13:59 IST

The United States military has conducted a humanitarian air drop in the besieged Iraqi town of Amrili, home to thousands of Shia Turkomen who have been cut off from receiving food, water, and medical supplies for two months by the militants of the Islamic State, the Pentagon said.

The US air force delivered this aid alongside aircraft from Australia, France and the United Kingdom who also dropped much needed supplies, Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Admiral John Kirby said.

In conjunction with this airdrop, US aircraft conducted coordinated airstrikes against terrorists in order to support this humanitarian assistance operation, Kirby said.

These military operations were conducted under the authorisation from President Barack Obama to facilitate the delivery of humanitarian assistance and to prevent an attack on the civilians of Amirli by the militants, he added.

"The operations will be limited in their scope and duration as necessary to address this emerging humanitarian crisis and protect the civilians trapped in Amirli," he said.

So far the US has conducted a total of 115 airstrikes across Iraq.

Image: Airmen from the 8th Expeditionary Air Mobility Squadron palletize halal meals for a humanitarian airdrop mission over Iraq at a base in the US Central Command area of responsibility. Photographs: US Air Force/Reuters

Lalit K Jha in Washington