WASHINGTON, September 6 (RIA Novosti) - The United States continues to conduct airstrikes against the Islamic State (IS) militants in Iraq, US Central Command said in a statement.
“US military forces continued to attack ISIL terrorists in Iraq, using a mix of fighter, attack, bomber and unmanned aircraft to conduct four airstrikes Thursday and Friday in support of Mosul Dam and defense of Irbil operations,” the statement reads. “In total, the strikes destroyed an ISIL observation post, one ISIL Humvee, one ISIL armed vehicle, one ISIL truck, and three ISIL mortar positions.”
According to the Central Command, the strikes were conducted to protect “US personnel and facilities, support humanitarian efforts, and support Iraqi forces that are acting in furtherance of these objectives.”
In total, the US Central Command has conducted of 131 airstrikes across Iraq.
In August, US President Barack Obama authorized "targeted" airstrikes against IS, in order to protect American interests in Iraq.
IS, formerly known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS), or Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) is a jihadist group, originally composed of a variety of Sunni insurgent groups.
IS militants have been fighting alongside the other rebel groups against the government forces in the Syrian civil war, before launching an offensive in Iraq in June 2014. Later in June, IS announced the establishment of an Islamic caliphate on the territories that had fallen under its control.
Islamic State militants attack ethnic and religious minorities by seizing their territories, forcing them to flee, abusing, torturing and even killing them.