WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States conducted further air strikes against Islamic State forces on Tuesday and Wednesday, targeting the militant group near Iraq’s Mosul Dam and the Syrian border town of Kobani, according to U.S. Central Command.
A U.S.-led coalition conducted 12 air strikes near the Mosul Dam complex in northern Iraq, Central Command said in a statement on Wednesday. U.S. forces also conducted six air strikes close to Kobani near Syria’s border with Turkey, it said.
The strikes in Syria destroyed a logistical center for Islamic State, a militant group that has declared a caliphate, or Muslim theocracy, and seized territory across Iraq and Syria. The strikes also destroyed one of the group’s buildings, vehicles and fighting positions, Central Command said, citing assessments based on initial reports.
In Iraq, the strikes destroyed a large group of Islamic State fighters along with vehicles, fighting positions and a mortar-lauching site, according to the U.S. statement.
The latest strikes around Mosul follow Pentagon warnings that Islamic State wanted to take control of the dam, which is a vital water and power source for what is Iraq’s largest northern city of 1.7 million residents.
“The ISF and the Kurdish forces specifically are still in control of the Mosul Dam complex. ISIL wants it back. And they still threaten it. They don’t have it but they still threaten it,” Pentagon spokesman Rear Admiral John Kirby told reporters on Tuesday, using an acronym for the militant group.
Reporting by Susan Heavey and Phil Stewart; Editing by Bill Trott