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NEWS | Feb. 3, 2015

Coalition supports Kurdish Security Forces, repels ISIL attack on Kirkuk

By U.S. Central Command News Release

February 3, 2015

Release # 20150202
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

TAMPA, Fla. - U.S. and coalition forces continue to support efforts against ISIL forces in Iraq and Syria, most recently helping Kurdish Security Forces repel an ISIL attack on Kirkuk, Iraq.

On Jan. 30, Kurdish Security Forces (KSF) counterattacked ISIL on eight bridges they had captured during their initial assault on Kirkuk. By the end of the day, the KSF had successfully recaptured five of the bridges. On Jan. 31, the KSF continued to advance and eventually recaptured the remaining three bridges. Afterwards, the KSF improved and reinforced the former ISIL positions in preparation for a counterattack which took place on Feb. 1. ISIL attempted to regain all the crossing points with a synchronized, multipronged attack, and was defeated by the KSF.

From Saturday through Monday, coalition forces conducted 32 airstrikes in support of the KSF in Kirkuk, neutralizing or destroying ISIL armored tactical and armored vehicles, numerous ISIL formations and fighting positions, buildings and other equipment.

CENTCOM currently assesses that while ISIL still has the ability to conduct small-scale operations, their capacity to do so is degraded and their momentum is stalling. The increasing tenacity of anti-ISIL forces along with coalition airstrikes has degraded ISIL's ability to command and control forces; recruit, train and retain fighters; produce revenue from oil sales; and to maintain morale.