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U.S. Launches New Air Strikes In Northern Iraq

The U.S. military says it has conducted four more air strikes on Islamic militants in northern Iraq.

U.S. Central Command said jet fighters and drones destroyed on August 9 two armored carriers and a truck that were firing on members of the Yazidi religious minority near the town of Sinjar.

It was the third round of air strikes against Islamic State (IS) forces since August 7, when U.S. President Barack Obama authorized air strikes on Iraq.

The previous strikes targeted IS forces threatening the Kurdish city of Irbil.

The Pentagon later said U.S. military planes dropped food and water for a third time to the thousands of civilians who have fled into mountains after the IS overran Sinjar a week ago.

The aircraft delivered 72 bundles of supplies, including some 14,000 liters of water and more than 16,000 meals.

France and Britain announced they will also provide humanitarian assistance to the refugees.

Earlier on August 9, Obama said air strikes by U.S. forces on IS positions will continue in order to protect U.S. personnel in northern Iraq and to protect refugees.

He insisted that there was no timetable for when such strikes willcease.

He also warned that it is "going to take some time" to help Iraqis overcome the Islamic rebellion.

Obama also reiterated his call for reconciliation between Iraq's communities "so the people of Iraq have the opportunity for a better future."

Meanwhile, UNICEF's spokesman in Iraq, Karim Elkorany, said at least 56 Yazidi children have died of dehydration in the mountains around Sinjar.

British officials estimated that up to 150,000 people could be trapped on the mountains.

Juan Mohammed, a local government spokesman in the Syrian city of Qamishli, told AP news agency that more than 20,000 starving Yazidis were fleeing across the border, braving gunfire through a tenuous "safe passage" being defended by Kurdish forces.

With reporting by AP and AFP
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