French jets bomb ISIS depot in Iraq
France said it has conducted its first airstrike in Iraq and has destroyed a logistics depot held by the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), according to the Associated Press.
The office of President Francois Hollande’s said Rafale fighter jets struck the depot in northeastern Iraq on Friday morning and the target was “entirely destroyed.”
Hollande’s office said other operations will continue in the coming days.
Iraq’s military spokesman said the four French airstrikes killed dozens of fighters from ISIS in a contested area of northern Iraq.
Qassim al-Moussawi, spokesman for the Iraqi military, said four French airstrikes hit the town of Zumar, killing dozens of extremist fighters. Zumar and surrounding towns have remained heavily contested by Islamic State fighters, even though Iraqi and Kurdish security forces have managed to make headway in nearby regions with the support of US airstrikes.
Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani
Meanwhile Iraq’s most important Shi’ite religious leader Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani endorsed international intervention against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), following U.S. and French air strikes, but called for strict guidelines, AFP reported.
“Even if Iraq is in need of help from its brothers and friends in fighting black terrorism, maintaining the sovereignty and independence of its decisions is of the highest importance,” Sistani’s spokesman Sheikh Abdul Mehdi Karbala’i said during a Friday sermon.
Sistani speaks for millions of Iraqis and has a worldwide following.