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U.S. airstrike kills Islamic State rocket expert

The unmanned airstrike also killed other IS militants.

By
Brooks Hays
Smoke rises during fighting between Iraqi army and Islamic State militants, in Tikrit. On Sunday, Col. Steve Warren announced an IS rocket expert had been killed by a U.S. drone attack in northern Iraq. Photo by Alaa mohamed/UPI
Smoke rises during fighting between Iraqi army and Islamic State militants, in Tikrit. On Sunday, Col. Steve Warren announced an IS rocket expert had been killed by a U.S. drone attack in northern Iraq. Photo by Alaa mohamed/UPI | License Photo

WASHINGTON, April 3 (UPI) -- The Pentagon announced Sunday an Islamic State rocket expert was killed by a U.S. drone attack. The expert was believed to be responsible for a rocket attack that killed a U.S. Marine in northern Iraq last month.

Army Col. Steve Warren, speaking from Baghdad, told reporters Jasim Khadijah has helmed a number of IS rocket attacks and was linked to the attack that killed Staff Sgt. Louis F. Cardin.

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Col. Warren said the unmanned airstrike also killed other IS militants and destroyed at least one of the terrorist group's makeshift drones.

Cardin was the second member of the U.S. military killed by the IS, also known as ISIS, ISIL and Daesh. The staff sergeant was stationed at Fire Base Bell. The artillery defense outpost had only recently been established. The Pentagon only confirmed its existence after the rocket attack that killed Cardin.

Warren said the fire base will provide artillery support as U.S. troops focus on retaking the Nineveh province in northern Iraq from the Islamic State.

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