(photo credit: JPOST STAFF)
ERBIL, Iraq - Two Iraqi army pilots were killed on Thursday when their helicopter was shot down over the city of Mosul by Islamic State, according to a military statement.
The helicopter was providing air support to Federal Police forces battling Islamic State fighters on the western side of Mosul, the statement said.
It is the first aircraft downed by Islamic State over Mosul since the start of the US-backed offensive on the northern Iraqi city, in October.
Mosul is Islamic State's last major city stronghold in Iraq. The hardline group seized the city nearly three years ago, declaring from one of its old mosques a "caliphate" that also spans parts of Syria.