News / Middle East

Obama: Iraqi Kurds, Military Recapture Mosul Dam

President Barack Obama speaks in the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, Aug. 18, 2014.
President Barack Obama speaks in the James Brady Press Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, Aug. 18, 2014.
Meredith Buel

President Barack Obama says American airstrikes have helped Iraqi forces and Kurds recapture the strategic Mosul dam from Islamist militants and avert a humanitarian disaster.   

During an appearance at the White House, President Obama said Iraqi and Kurdish security forces, backed by U.S. war planes, have retaken the dam from fighters from the Islamic State group.  

“If that dam was breached it could have proven catastrophic with floods that would have threatened the lives of thousands of civilians and endangered our embassy compound in Baghdad," said President Obama.

Obama said Iraqi and Kurdish forces took the lead fighting the militants on the ground, which proves they can work together.

He said the U.S. is providing weapons to Iraqi and Kurdish fighters and they are making important progress in pushing back terrorists.

The president said the U.S. is putting together an international coalition to bring humanitarian aid to displaced Iraqis.

“The United States will work with the Iraqi government as well as partners like the United Kingdom, Canada, France, Italy and Australia to get food and water to people in need and to bring long-term relief to people who have been driven from their homes," said Obama.

U.S. Central Command says fighters, bombers and drones launched 15 air strikes Monday around the Mosul dam.

The strikes hit nine fighting positions of the Islamic State as well as anti-aircraft artillery, armed vehicles and other targets.

Pentagon spokesman Army Colonel Steve Warren:

“We struck preplanned targets ahead of the ground operation and then during the ground operation are continuing to strike targets as needed," said Warren.

Since August 8, U.S. Central Command has conducted 68 airstrikes, with about half of those in support of Iraqi forces near the Mosul dam.

The dam is crucial to northern Iraq, providing electricity and irrigation for much of the region.

Warren says the airstrikes are part of a broader mission to protect U.S. personnel, critical infrastructure as well as preventing humanitarian disasters.

The U.S. first launched airstrikes earlier this month against the insurgents, in part to prevent the killing of thousands of minority Yazidis and Christians stranded in northern Iraq.  

 

You May Like

Taliban's New Leader Says Jihad Will Continue

Top US Afghan diplomat also meets with Pakistani, Afghan officials following news of Mullah Omar's death More

Video US Landmark Pushes Endangered Species

People gathered in streets, on rooftops in Manhattan to see image highlights that covered 33 floors of Empire State Building More

World’s Widest Suspension Bridge Being Built Over Bosphorus

Once built, Yavuz Sultan Selim Bridge will span 2 kilometers with about 1.5 kilometers over water, and will be longest suspension bridge in world carrying rail system More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: MUSTAFA from: INDIA
August 18, 2014 10:13 PM
If there is no support to world famous terrorist group in Syria to kill and beheaded helpless Syrians by Saudi Arabia, Israel, Turkey, Jordon, Kuwait, EU and of course USA, this situation never happen. Give me answer, who is giving weapons, training in Jordon for human killers and Financial Back up. The answer will inform the world who is really terrorist.

by: Mr A from: new york
August 18, 2014 9:13 PM
great job. I am so happy that we are able to fight back the barbaric ISIs. I feel so bad about innocent people who are killed from ISIS militant. Now people understand a fact that radical Islam is very dangerous and Islam is not a peaceful religion .still .no body is paying attention to Saudi role .we to get the fact straight about the countries and individual who is supporting them
In Response

by: MUSTAFA from: INDIA
August 20, 2014 12:51 PM
Islam is a peaceful religion. Islam never ever teaches us to kill or even hurt some one. This is Saudi Wahabi Islam, who teaches its followers to kill or Beheaded helpless man and woman in the name of Saudi Islam. These terrorist got training in Saudi Arabia how to behead man and woman with pleasure and smile on their face. God did not disclose fate of these human killers in their graves, otherwise world will know what is the gift from God side against their activities in the name of Islam.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missionsi
|| 0:00:00
...    
🔇
X
George Putic
July 30, 2015 8:59 PM
Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Astronauts Train Underwater for Deep Space Missions

Manned deep space missions are still a long way off, but space agencies are already testing procedures, equipment and human stamina for operations in extreme environment conditions. Small groups of astronauts take turns in spending days in an underwater lab, off Florida’s southern coast, simulating future missions to some remote world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Civil Rights Leaders Struggled to Achieve Voting Rights Act

Fifty years ago, lawmakers approved, and U.S. President Lyndon Johnson signed, the Voting Rights Act of 1965. The measure outlawed racial discrimination in voting, giving millions of blacks in many parts of the southern United States federal enforcement of the right to vote. Correspondent Chris Simkins introduces us to some civil rights leaders who were on the front lines in the struggle for voting rights.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video 'Metal Muscles' Flex a New Bionic Hand

Artificial limbs, including the most complex of them – the human hand – are getting more life-like and useful due to constant advances in tiny hydraulic, pneumatic and electric motors called actuators. But now, as VOA’s George Putic reports, scientists in Germany say the future of the prosthetic hand may lie not in motors but in wires that can ‘remember’ their shape.
Video

Video Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponents

A British pro-democracy group has accused Russia of abusing the global law enforcement agency Interpol by requesting the arrest and extradition of political opponents. A new report by the group notes such requests can mean the accused are unable to travel and are often unable to open bank accounts. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video 'Positive Atmosphere' Points Toward TPP Trade Deal in Hawaii

Talks on a major new trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations are said to be nearing completion in Hawaii. Some trade experts say the "positive atmosphere" at the discussions could mean a deal is within reach, but there is still hard bargaining to be done over many issues and products, including U.S. drugs and Japanese rice. VOA's Jim Randle reports.
Video

Video Genome Initiative Urgently Moves to Freeze DNA Before Species Go Extinct

Earth is in the midst of its sixth mass extinction. The last such event was caused by an asteroid 66 million years ago. It killed off the dinosaurs and practically everything else. So scientists are in a race against time to classify the estimated 11 million species alive today. So far only 2 million are described by science, and researchers are worried many will disappear before they even have a name. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Scientists: One-Dose Malaria Cure is Possible

Scientists have long been trying to develop an effective protection and cure for malaria - one of the deadliest diseases that affects people in tropical areas, especially children. As the World Health Organization announces plans to begin clinical trials of a promising new vaccine, scientists in South Africa report that they too are at an important threshold. George Putic reports, they are testing a compound that could be a single-dose cure for malaria.
Video

Video 'New York' Magazine Features 35 Cosby Accusers

The latest issue of 'New York' magazine features 35 women who say they were drugged and raped by film and television celebrity Bill Cosby. The women are aged from 44 to 80 and come from different walks of life and races. The magazine interviewed each of them separately, but Zlatica Hoke reports their stories are similar.
Video

Video US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Win

The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video Washington DC Underground Streetcar Station to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C.’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.

VOA Blogs