A humanitarian mission to rescue thousands of Yazidis trapped in Iraq is “far less likely” to take place after an assessment carried out by a US team.
US Army Special Forces soldiers and a US Agency for International Development (USAID) team spent several hours on the mountain speaking to refugees on Wednesday.
They have since returned to Irbil, the capital of the Kurdish autonomous region, and reported fewer Yazidis remain trapped on the mountain than previously feared.
Some 5,000 refugees remain stranded on Mount Sinjar, according to Sky sources.
It had previously been thought there were between 20,000 and 30,000 still there after fleeing militants of the Islamic State (IS), formerly known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS).
A statement released by the Pentagon said humanitarian aid drops, airstrikes on Islamic State (IS) fighters and the efforts of Peshmerga fighters had allowed many Yazidis to escape.
It added: “The Yazidis who remain are in better condition than previously believed and continue to have access to the food and water that we have dropped.
“Based on this assessment the interagency has determined that an evacuation mission is far less likely.
“Additionally, we will continue to provide humanitarian assistance as needed and will protect US personnel and facilities.”
Full article: Iraq: Yazidi Rescue Mission ‘Far Less Likely’ (Sky News)