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The Coalition Strikes Back After Iraqi Anti-Aircraft Gunfire

By Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, Oct. 22, 2002 – Coalition aircraft struck at an Iraqi integrated air defense site in the Northern No-fly Zone Oct. 22, said Air Force Maj. Scott Covode, a spokesman for the combined task force.

Both U.S. and British aircraft took part in the attack. While Covode would not specify the planes used, he did note the British primarily provide refuelers and reconnaissance aircraft.

The planes struck a site near Mosul in response to Iraqi anti-aircraft artillery fire on Operation Northern Watch patrol aircraft. The response was immediate, Covode said. "We respond when attacked," he said. He would not say whether coalition retaliation was launched against the attacking Iraqi site or some other.

The coalition aircraft are based at Incirlik Air Base, Turkey. Officials withheld their unit assignments, citing force protection issues. The response was the second in the Operation Northern Watch area this month. Operation Southern Watch patrols have responded six times in their area this month.

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