June 21, 2015 / 3:01 PM / 2 years ago

U.S., allies target Islamic State with 18 air strikes in Iraq

A F/A-18C Hornet of Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 251 (VMFA-251) is catapulted off the flight deck of the USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN-71) aircraft carrier in the Gulf, June 18, 2015. REUTERS/Hamad I Mohammed

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - U.S. and coalition forces launched 18 air strikes against Islamic State targets in Iraq on Saturday, with four each in Tal Afar and Mosul, the U.S. military said in a statement.

The air strikes hit near nine Iraqi cities in all, destroying Islamic State buildings, tactical units, heavy machine guns and vehicles, the Combined Joint Task Force said in a statement Sunday.

Near Haditha, two air strikes hit a militants’ safe house and an Islamic State headquarters, it said. Other cities affected were Baghdadi, Ar Rutbah, Baiji, Fallujah, Makhmur and Sinjar, it said.

In Syria, three air strikes near Tal Abyad on Saturday hit three Islamic State tactical units, destroyed three fighting positions and a heavy machine gun, the military coalition said.

Reporting by Doina Chiacu; Editing by Alison Williams

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