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Iraq offers air support to Kurdish Peshmerga to combat Sunni militants

The Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri Maliki, ordered the air force to provide support to Kurdish forces combating Sunni Militants, reports the BBC.

Iraq’s army spokesman, Qassem Atta in a statement on Monday, said,

“The  commander in chief of the armed forces has issued orders to the leadership of the air force and the army’s aviation units to provide air support to Peshmerga forces."

The announcement comes as the two towns of Sinjar and Zumar were captured by the Sunni militants over the weekend. The UN warned that as a result the safety of thousands of Iraq’s Yazidi community.

“The situation is quite dramatic. We have increasing reports of people who have no access to drinking water, not to speak of food or lack of medication,” said the UN special envoy to Iraq, Nickolay Mladenov.

The Peshmerga, known for their devout commitment to the Kurdish nationalist cause and regarded as well-trained, well-armed and capable, are the military vanguard of the Kurdish struggle for self-determination. The term Peshmerga translates to ‘those who follow death.’