UAE joins Jordan to strike ISIS

f-16 jet fighter

 

 

The United Arab Emirates is sending a squadron of F16 fighter jets to Jordan to conduct air strikes against Islamic State (Isis) alongside Jordanian planes, an army source in Amman said. Jordan launched bombing raids against the jihadi group’s positions in Syria and Iraq on Thursday in response to its brutal killing of a captured Jordanian pilot, military action that it continued on Saturday. The UAE, meanwhile, has suspended flights as part of the US-led coalition conducting air strikes against Isis in view of concerns about search and rescue capabilities after the pilot was downed. UAE fighters would now join raids from inside Jordan, the source said. Both countries are members of a U.S.-led military coalition against the militants, but the UAE suspended its airstrikes late last year, U.S. officials have said. The suspension came after a Jordanian pilot, Lt. Muath al-Kaseasbeh, crashed over Islamic State group-held territory in northern Syria in late December and was taken captive. The militants recently released a video showing them burning the airman to death while he was trapped in a cage. The images angered Jordan and the region. Jordan has pledged harsh retaliation and said it would intensify air strikes against Islamic State targets. Starting Thursday, Jordanian fighter jets have carried out daily attacks, according to the military and state media. Jordan’s interior minister, Hussein al-Majali, said al-Kaseasbeh’s killing was a turning point for Jordan. He told the state-run al-Rai newspaper in comments published Saturday that Jordan will go after the militants “wherever they are.” “This is a big boost and will be helping our brothers shorten their flying distances and intensify strikes against the militants from Jordan,” an army source told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

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