U.S. begins striking Turkey’s best ally ISIS from Incirlik air base

Turkey's Incirlik Airbase was built by the United States and other NATO members in 1950s

WASHINGTON (KDN)- The US-led international coalition launched its first manned air strikes against Islamic State targets from the Incirlik Air Base in Turkey on Wednesday, the U.S. military said.

The coalition had launched flying, unmanned missions against the militants earlier this month, the Combined Joint Task Force said in a statement.

Turkish fighter jets were not involved in the manned U.S. air strikes on Wednesday, Turkish security sources said.

After seeing major gains by Kurdish forces in northern Syria, Turkey desperately agreed last month to join the coalition and open its strategically important bases to the U.S.-led coalition, which was considered to be a major policy change after years of reluctance to take a frontline role against the Islamist fighters pressing on its borders. However, instead of attacking ISIS, Turkey started to bomb Kurdistan Workers’ Party in Iraqi Kurdistan.

In July, Turkey said it launched air strikes against the militants in Syria for the first time, but claims have not been independently verified.