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Military Strikes Target ISIL Terrorists in Syria, Iraq

From a Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve News Release

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SOUTHWEST ASIA, December 21, 2015 — U.S. and coalition military forces have continued to attack Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorists in Syria and Iraq, Combined Joint Task Force Operation Inherent Resolve officials reported today.

Officials reported details of the latest strikes, noting that assessments of results are based on initial reports.

Strikes in Syria

Ground-attack and remotely piloted aircraft conducted three strikes in Syria:

-- Near Mar’a, two strikes struck an ISIL tactical unit and destroyed an ISIL staging area and an ISIL mortar system.

-- Near Ayn Isa, one strike destroyed an ISIL road obstacle and an ISIL bomb.

Additionally, there was an additional strike in Syria from Dec. 19 that was not included on the Dec. 20 strike release:

-- Near Raqqah, one strike struck five ISIL gas and oil separation points and two ISIL crude oil collection points.

Strikes in Iraq

Attack, fighter, bomber, ground-attack and remotely piloted aircraft conducted 12 strikes in Iraq, coordinated with and in support of Iraq’s government:

-- Near Beiji, two strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units and destroyed an ISIL rocket-propelled grenade, an ISIL heavy machine gun, seven ISIL vehicles, two ISIL caches, and an ISIL fighting position.

-- Near Mosul, six strikes struck two separate ISIL tactical units, an ISIL weapons storage facility, and an ISIL weapons cache and destroyed two ISIL heavy machine guns, an ISIL mortar tube, three ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL checkpoint, two ISIL vehicles, and suppressed an ISIL light machine gun.

-- Near Ramadi, four strikes struck a large ISIL tactical unit and destroyed eight ISIL buildings, eight ISIL fighting positions, an ISIL staging area, an ISIL command-and-control node, an ISIL tactical vehicle, three ISIL heavy machine guns, and denied ISIL access to terrain.

A strike, as defined in the CJTF releases, means one or more kinetic events that occur in roughly the same geographic location to produce a single, sometimes cumulative effect for that location. So having a single aircraft deliver a single weapon against a lone ISIL vehicle is one strike, but so is multiple aircraft delivering dozens of weapons against a group of buildings and vehicles and weapon systems in a compound, for example, having the cumulative effect of making that facility [or facilities] harder or impossible to use. Accordingly, CJTF-OIR does not report the number or type of aircraft employed in a strike, the number of munitions dropped in each strike, or the number of individual munition impact points against a target.

Part of Operation Inherent Resolve

The strikes were conducted as part of Operation Inherent Resolve, the operation to eliminate the ISIL terrorist group and the threat they pose to Iraq, Syria, and the wider international community. The destruction of ISIL targets in Syria and Iraq further limits the group's ability to project terror and conduct operations.

Coalition nations conducting strikes in Iraq include the United States, Australia, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, France, Jordan, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. Coalition nations conducting strikes in Syria include the United States, Australia, Bahrain, Canada, France, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the United Kingdom.