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Danish parliament approves air strikes against IS in Iraq

(Xinhua) Updated: 2014-10-02 19:42

COPENHAGEN - Denmark's parliament on Thursday overwhelmingly approved plans to send seven F-16 fighter jets to join the fight against the Islamic State (IS) in Iraq.

The parliament voted 94 to 9 in favor of air strikes against the IS, according to Danish News Agency Ritzau.

"It is a tough decision, but also the right decision," said Denmark's Prime Minister Helle Thorning-Schmidt after the vote.

Defense Minister Nicolai Wammen said the aircraft are expected to take off for the base in Kuwait on Thursday.

"I have given the green light to the Chief of Defense Staff so that he can send our F-16s in the air," Wammen said.

Last Friday, Denmark announced that it would send the fighter jets to joint the fight against the IS in Iraq.

In addition, Denmark will send troops in northern Iraq as the United States has expressed the desire for Denmark to contribute to the training of Iraqi and Kurdish security forces.

The prime minister stated earlier that the Danish fighter jets will only participate in the fight against IS on Iraqi territory as the country has requested for military support itself.

The Danish soldiers should not be sent into battle, but to assist with the training, the prime minister added.

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