United States and Kurdish airstrikes have successfully broken the siege on Mount Sinjar, according to a Pentagon spokesperson. The militants that laid siege to the mountain have been scattered, allowing the number of Yezidis trapped there to escape. The report was passed by Defense officials on late Wednesday.
Almost a dozen Marines and Special Operations forces worked for more than 24 hours on the Iraqi mountain. A senior Defense official stated that the situation is manageable now.
In a meeting at the Andrews Air Force Base (Md.), Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel mentioned that the U.S. might not perform rescue operations on the mountain. He cited his reason being an assessment team’s report that stated there were far fewer Yezidis on the mountains than previously believed. Those that were trapped are in good condition.
The religious minority of the Yezidis had been fleeing from Islamic militants and was trapped on Mount Sinjar. U.S. Defense officials were initially planning to provide airlifts to rescue those trapped, but new reports revealed that there are not thousands of Yezidis trapped, and the ones trapped are in good condition.
The UN has reported that the current middle-Eastern crisis has already displaced more than a million Iraqis. They declared the crisis a “level three emergency” on Wednesday. Level three is their highest in humanitarian issues.
The Pentagon press secretary Rear Admiral John Kirby, hailed the efforts by American and Kurdish fighters, stating it allowed the Yezidis to escape from the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.