France to increase the number of air patrols over Iraq

imgThe French Ministry of Defense says Paris is going to step up its military presence in Iraq by increasing the number of air “patrols” over the crisis-hit country.

“We will increase the rate of our patrols,” said French Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian on Sunday, adding, “With nine Rafale (aircraft) in the zone, we can carry out two patrols per day.”

Le Drian also commented on the US-led coalition’s strikes against the IS terrorists in Iraq, saying the IS “is not a terrorist group. It is clearly a terrorist army. There are 20,000, 25,000, 30,000 combatants that are properly armed.”

Meanwhile, the Netherland’s F-16 fighter bombers began flights over the country, said the Dutch defense ministry.

“Dutch F-16s flew today over the conflict zone in Iraq for the first time,” the ministry said in a statement.

The IS militants control large parts of Syria’s northern territory. The IS sent its militants into Iraq in June, quickly seizing vast expanse of land straddling the border between the two countries.

They have threatened all communities, including Shias, Sunnis, Kurds, Christians, Yazidi Kurds, and others, as they continue their atrocities in Iraq.

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