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U.S., allies conduct 23 air strikes in Syria, Iraq: military

WASHINGTON : U.S.-led forces conducted 16 air strikes in Syria, most of them around Kobani near the Turkish border, and seven in the oil-producing northern region of Iraq since Monday, the U.S. Central Command said.

Ten air strikes conducted by the United States and its allies near Kobani hit eight small Islamic State units, damaged three fighting positions and destroyed a logistics facility, Centcom said Wednesday in a statement.

The town has become a test of the U.S.-led coalition’s ability to halt the advance of the hardline insurgents. It is one of the few areas in Syria where it can co-ordinate air strikes with operations by an effective ground force.

Iraqi Kurdish peshmerga have helped take some villages around Kobani but the lines of control in the town remain the same.

In Iraq, five air strikes near Baiji, home to an oil refinery, struck one large Islamic State unit, three small ones and destroyed two buildings, two vehicles and a sniper position used by the militants, it said. The other two strikes hit near the oil city of Kirkuk in Iraq’s Kurdish dominated north. -REUTERS

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