WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States and its allies conducted 25 strikes against Islamic State in Iraq and Syria on Monday, focusing on rebel forces near towns that guard the approach to the key Iraqi city of Mosul, the coalition leading the operations said on Tuesday.
The coalition carried out six strikes near Sultan Abdallah south of Mosul, hitting fighting positions, a vehicle-borne explosives device, a rocket position, a trench and an assembly area, it said in a statement.
It carried out four strikes against Islamic State forces near Kisik, west of Mosul, destroying a staging area, a bunker, a supply cache and a fighting position. Near Mosul itself, the coalition carried out one strike against an Islamic State headquarters.
Iraqi security forces, backed by the U.S.-led coalition, are currently involved in shaping operations to pave the way for an offensive to recapture Mosul, Iraq’s second-largest city, which has been controlled by Islamic State since June 2014.
The coalition strikes in Iraq were carried out by manned and unmanned aircraft as well as ground-based rocket artillery, the statement said.
In Syria, the coalition continued to target oil resources that make up a large portion of Islamic State’s revenue base, using air strikes to disable two oil field pumping jacks near the town of Raqqa.
Reporting by David Alexander; Editing by Chizu Nomiyama