France to send Mirage jets for operations against IS in Kirkuk

Author : Mircea Birca | Saturday, November 22, 2014
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imgTwo French jets, backed by US-led coalition planes, have targeted ISIL trenches near Iraq’s northern city of Kirkuk as operations continue against the terrorist group’s frontlines.

Two Dassault-built (AVMD.PA) Rafale fighters hit trenches, used by ISIL militants to capture the northern Iraqi oil city, at around 0330 GMT, French Defense Ministry said in a statement on Wednesday.

“This action was carried out simultaneously with our allies to create a breach in the defensive positions held by the terrorists on the frontline between Iraqi forces and” ISIL militants, the ministry added.

Earlier in the day, French government spokesman, Stephane Le Foll, told BFM TV that the country would soon boost its deployment in the region to fight the ISIL militants.

Paris also reportedly plans to send Mirage fighter jets to Jordan to increase its operations against the ISIL cult.

French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve recently said the number of French nationals leaving the country to join the ISIL militant group in Syria and Iraq shows an 82-percent rise in 2014.

“There is a considerable increase in the number of departures” from France to the Middle East in recent months, Cazeneuve said in a radio interview, adding that the increase has put about 375 French citizens “in the theater of operations in Syria and Iraq.”

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