Counter-ISIL Strikes Continue in Syria, Iraq

U.S. and coalition military forces continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Syria and Iraq yesterday, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported on Thursday.

Officials reported details of yesterday’s strikes, noting that assessments of results are based on initial reports.

Strikes in Syria

Attack and remotely piloted aircraft conducted two strikes in Syria:

  • Near Hawl, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL vehicle.
  • Near Mara, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed three ISIL defensive fighting positions.

Strikes in Iraq

Rocket artillery and attack, fighter and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 25 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of the Iraqi government:

  • Near Habbaniyah, a strike damaged an ISIL defensive fighting position.
  • Near Haditha, a strike struck an ISIL tactical unit.
  • Near Hit, three strikes struck an ISIL tactical unit and an ISIL safe house and destroyed two ISIL supply caches, 15 ISIL rockets, three ISIL bunkers and an ISIL tunnel.
  • Near Kirkuk, three strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed five ISIL assembly areas and an ISIL beddown location.
  • Near Mosul, eight strikes struck five separate ISIL tactical units, destroying three ISIL assembly areas, an ISIL vehicle, an ISIL beddown location, two ISIL safe houses and an ISIL fighting position and suppressing two ISIL mortar firing positions.
  • Near Qayyarah, four strikes struck an ISIL improvised explosive device factory and an ISIL communications facility, destroying an ISIL mortar position and denying ISIL access to terrain.
  • Near Sultan Abdallah, four strikes destroyed four ISIL assembly areas, five ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL tunnel system and an improvised ISIL ferry system.
  • Near Tal Afar, a strike struck an ISIL communications facility.

Task force officials define a strike as one or more kinetic events that occur in roughly the same geographic location to produce a single, sometimes cumulative, effect. Therefore, officials explained, a single aircraft delivering a single weapon against a lone ISIL vehicle is one strike, but so is multiple aircraft delivering dozens of weapons against buildings, vehicles and weapon systems in a compound, for example, having the cumulative effect of making those targets harder or impossible for ISIL to use.

Accordingly, officials said, they do not report the number or type of aircraft employed in a strike, the number of munitions dropped in each strike, or the number of individual munition impact points against a target. Ground-based artillery fired in counterfire or in fire support to maneuver roles is not classified as a strike, officials added.

Part of Operation Inherent Resolve

The strikes were conducted as part of Operation Inherent Resolve, the operation to eliminate the ISIL terrorist group and the threat they pose to Iraq, Syria, the region, and the wider international community. The destruction of ISIL targets in Syria and Iraq further limits the terrorist group's ability to project terror and conduct operations, officials said.

Coalition nations that have conducted strikes in Iraq include the United States, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Jordan, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. Coalition nations that have conducted strikes in Syria include the United States, Australia, Bahrain, Canada, France, Jordan, the Netherlands, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.

(Source: US Dept of Defense)

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