Iraq Turmoil

Obama: Situation has ‘Greatly Improved’ for Yazidi Refugees

President Barack Obama on Thursday said air strikes and humanitarian aid have “greatly improved” the situation for Yazidis trapped on a mountain in northern Iraq and it is now unlikely a rescue mission will be necessary to save the refugees threatened by Islamic militants.

“We helped vulnerable people reach safety, and we helped save many innocent lives,” Obama said in a statement delivered from Martha’s Vineyard, where he is vacationing.

U.S. special forces, along with the U.S. Agency for International Development, landed Wednesday on the Sinjar Mountains to find many Yazidis had been able to escape the mountain that had previously been surrounded by Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) militants. Humanitarian drops had also successfully gotten food and water to those in need.

“The bottom line is the situation on the mountain has greatly improved and Americans should be very proud of our efforts,” Obama said.

Obama Calls Iraq Mountain Mission a Success 1:06


-- Andrew Rafferty