NPR : News

Filed Under:

Obama: U.S. To End Aid Drops In Iraq, But Airstrikes To Continue

Update at 2:25 p.m. ET.

President Obama says U.S. airstrikes have broken a siege by Islamic militants of minority Yazidis on a mountaintop in northwestern Iraq and it's unlikely that more airdrops of humanitarian aid will be necessary.

"Our military was able to successfully strike ISIL targets around the mountain," where the militant group had laid siege to the Yazidis, he said.

He said U.S. airstrikes against the militants would continue "to protect our people and facilities in Iraq."

The president, speaking from Martha's Vineyard, where the first family is vacationing, said thousands of people had been safely evacuated from Mount Sinjar and that the majority of U.S. personnel involved in the rescue and relief operation would be leaving Iraq within a few days.

"We helped vulnerable people reach safety and we helped save many innocent lives," he said. "Because of these efforts we do not expect there to be an additional operation to evacuate people off the mountain and it's unlikely that we are going to need to continue humanitarian airdrops on the mountain."

Reuters says: "The United States had sent about 130 U.S. military personnel to Arbil to draw up options ranging from creating a safe corridor for the Yazidis to an airlift to rescue them. A team of fewer than 20 U.S. personnel flew to Mount Sinjar to assess the situation."

Copyright 2014 NPR. To see more, visit


Investigative Journalist From Belarus Awarded Nobel Prize In Literature

Investigative journalist Svetlana Alexievich was awarded the 2015 Nobel Prize for Literature Thursday. She is the first writer from Belarus to win the prize.

Berkeley's Sugary Drinks Are Getting Pricier, Thanks To New Tax

Berkeley, Calif., passed a 1-cent-per-ounce tax on sugary beverages in 2014. Researchers say soda prices went up three months after it was implemented — a first step toward reducing consumption.

Orrin Hatch On TPP: Despite Concerns, Fast-Track Authority Was 'Essential'

Sen. Orrin Hatch of Utah has reservations on where the Trans-Pacific Partnership landed on patent protection. NPR's Robert Siegel talks to the senator about the GOP reaction to the trade deal.

Tracking A Rollercoaster: Sotheby's Offers Clues About Survival Of Tech Bubble

One of the surest signs of an economic bubble that is about to pop is a surge in the stock price of Sotheby's. The global art dealer's stock resembles a rollercoaster, and it has predicted every up and down of the global economy since the company went public. So with talk of big bubbles in the tech sector, Planet Money went poking around.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.