|Coalition Forces Strike Iraqi Missile Sites |
Coalition Forces Strike Iraqi Missile Sites
U.S. and allied air forces struck surface-to-air missile sites in southern Iraq January 28 in response to recent Iraqi violations of United Nations Security Council resolutions, the U.S. Central Command says. Source: Wireless File (EUR105) U.S. Department of State, January 29, 2001.
"The sites were targeted to further degrade Iraq's ability to jeopardize coalition pilots and aircraft enforcing United Nations' mandates," the Central Command announcement said January 29.
U.S. and British war planes patrol two no-fly zones over the north and south of the country.
Following is the text of the U.S. Central Command announcement: (begin text)
U.S. Central Command, MacDill AFB, Florida, January 28, 2001.
Coalition Forces Strike Missiles Sites
MacDill AFB, Florida -- In response to recent Iraqi violations of United Nations Security Council Resolutions, Operation SOUTHERN WATCH aircraft used precision-guided weapons to strike surface-to-air missile systems today in southern Iraq at approximately 11:45 a.m. Eastern Standard Time.
All coalition aircraft returned safely and target battle damage assessment is ongoing.
The sites were targeted to further degrade Iraq's ability to jeopardize coalition pilots and aircraft enforcing United Nations' mandates. The last coalition strike in the Southern No-Fly Zone was against an Iraqi radar system and AAA (anti-aircraft artillery) sites on January 20.
To date, there have been more than 670 separate incidents of Iraqi surface-to-air missile and anti-aircraft artillery fire directed against coalition pilots since December 1998, including over 30 this month alone. Iraqi aircraft violated the Southern No-Fly Zone more than 150 times during the same period.
Coalition aircraft never target civilian populations or infrastructure and go to painstaking lengths to avoid injury to civilians and damage to civilian facilities.