US jets begin Syria strikes from Turkish base

 The United States has begun to carry out air strikes against the Islamic State group using manned jets launched from a base in Turkey, the Pentagon said Wednesday.

Washington: The United States has begun to carry out air strikes against the Islamic State group using manned jets launched from a base in Turkey, the Pentagon said Wednesday.

Previously, the US-led coalition bombing the jihadist group had used unmanned drones for missions launched from Turkey, with jets flying from carriers and other bases in the region.

"Today, the United States began flying manned counter-ISIL missions from Incirlik Air Base, Turkey. Strikes were conducted," Pentagon spokeswoman Commander Elissa Smith said.

"This follows Turkey`s announcement last month that it would open its bases to United States and coalition members` air operations against ISIL, as part of deeper US-Turkey counter-ISIL cooperation," she added.

Separately, a military spokesman confirmed that the strikes launched from Incirlik had targeted the IS group in Syria, one of the most powerful factions in the country`s complex civil war.

The United States is leading a coalition of Western and Arab powers carrying out strikes against Islamic State fighters in territory they have seized in Syria and Iraq.

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