UK C-130

The UK Royal Air Force (RAF) C-130 Hercules aircraft have made Britain’s first humanitarian aid drop to distressed Iraqi civilians trapped on Mount Sinjar.

UK Department for International Development (DFID) Secretary Justine Greening said: "Two RAF C130s are now getting desperately needed aid to those caught up in the violence in Iraq.

"These lifesaving supplies include reusable containers filled with clean water for 2,400 families, along with 500 solar lanterns that can also be used to recharge mobile phones."

A Downing Street spokesperson said: "We are working to step up these deliveries in the coming days.

"Meanwhile, we continue to engage with the US, Kurds, Turks and other international partners on how to get those trapped on the mountain to safety.

"We are planning to increase the number of humanitarian advisers in Irbil to provide better links to the situation on the ground."

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By GlobalData

Having already spent £13m in aid for the Iraqi refugees, the UK Government has ruled out military intervention in the troubled country.

"We are working to step up these deliveries in the coming days."

Approximately 50,000 Yazidi community residents are believed to be currently stranded on Mount Sinjar due to the ISIS offensive.

The UK airdrop comes as the US intensified airstrikes on ISIS militants, who have captured several states in northern Iraq in the last few months and have threatened local minority groups, including Christians and the Yazidi community.

The US F/A-18 fighter launched four airstrikes on ISIS’ mobile artillery piece near Erbil on 9 August and followed them with five more air raids that destroyed vehicles and artillery the following day.

Image: An RAF C-130 Hercules being loaded with UK aid at RAF Brize Norton, Oxfordshire. Photo: courtesy of Steve Lympany / MOD.

Defence Technology