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Did Iran strike ISIL forces in Iraq?
December 3, 2014, 8:40 pm

A week after Iran's talks with the P5+1 were extended, US Secretary of State John Kerry said that striking ISIL was a good thing in response to reports that Tehran had used F4 fighters against the extremist group in Iraq [Xinhua]

A week after Iran’s talks with the P5+1 were extended, US Secretary of State John Kerry said that striking ISIL was a good thing in response to reports that Tehran had used F4 fighters against the extremist group in Iraq [Xinhua]


Iranian officials late Wednesday reiterated their support for the Baghdad government in its fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) but denied that they were working with the US military against the extremist group.

A day earlier, a Pentagon report indicated that Iran may have used its fighter jets for the first time to strike ISIL positions in Iraq’s Diyala Province along the shared border.

“We have indications that they (Iranians) have flown these missions in recent days, these airstrikes in eastern Iraq,” Rear Admiral John Kirby told CNN’s Wolf Blitzer.

Kirby’s statement came on the heels of a November 30 analysis by the journal Jane’s Defence Weekly, which indicated that Al Jazeera footage of a fighter jet striking ISIL positions earlier in the week may indeed have been an Iranian F-4 Phantom.

Media speculation of a possible coordination between Tehran and Washington began last June when Iran began deploying military experts and three Sukhoi-25 fighter jets to help the Baghdad government secure the capital and various holy Islamic sites from the ISIL juggernaut.

The softening of vitriol between the two countries since talks on Iran’s nuclear program began in November 2013 has also fueled reports that the two countries who severed ties in 1979 may be working together against a common enemy.

But on Wednesday night, officials from both countries denied any coordination or cooperation in the war against ISIL.

While denying any coordination between the two countries, US Secretary of State John Kerry said that any attack against ISIL was a good thing.

A number of Arab countries including Jordan, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have joined a US-led coalition of countries who have participated in air strikes against ISIL positions in Iraq and Syria, or contributed personnel and weapons to both the government in Baghdad and Kurdish Peshmerga forces fighting against the extremist group in the north.

Iran, which is not part of the coalition, has said it would not allow the holy cities of Najaf and Karbala – revered by both Shia and Sunni Muslims – to fall to ISIL.

Source: Agencies

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