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Kurdish Fighters Push Back IS In Sinjar

Kurdish fighters have pushed back Islamic State militants in the northern Iraqi town of Sinjar, touching off heavy clashes.

Loud explosions and intense gunbattles were heard from inside the town on December 21.

The U.S. military said it had carried out four air strikes around Sinjar on December 21.

Last week, Iraqi Kurdish Peshmerga fighters launched the operation to retake Sinjar, and opened up a passageway to Mount Sinjar, which overlooks the town.

That push allowed some of the thousands of Yazidis trapped on the mountain following the town's fall in August to evacuate.

The president of the self-ruled northern Kurdish region, Masud Bazani, toured Kurdish positions on Mount Sinjar, where he vowed to defeat the Islamic State group.

"Most of the districts are under our control," Barzani told Peshmerga troops. "We will crush Islamic State."

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters