Iraqi Shiite Turkmens disembark from an Iraqi Army helicopter aid flight after being evacuated from Amirli, in Al-Muthana airport, Baghdad, Iraq, Saturday, Aug. 30, 2014. (AP Photo)
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Western warplanes dropped desperately needed aid Sunday to an Iraqi Shiite town under blockade by jihadists for well over two months as preparations to break the siege dragged on.The aid drops were accompanied by U.S. airstrikes and were the furthest south that American forces have intervened in Iraq, barring reconnaissance flights, since their withdrawal in December 2011 . Washington launched airstrikes in support of Kurdish forces in northern Iraq on Aug. 8 .Shiite militia and Kurdish forces closed in on the besieged enclave Sunday, reaching within 5 kilometers of the forces inside it, militia commander Mohammad Mahdi al-Bayati said.The U.S. military also launched fresh airstrikes Saturday on ISIS forces near Iraq's largest dam, north of the militant-held northern city of Mosul, the Pentagon said.
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