On September 6th, the commander of the Iraqi air force, Lieutenant General Anwar Hama Amin told that Iraqi F-16IQ (IQ is for Iraqi F-16) began combat operations on September 2nd. They carried out reconnaissance mission and fifteen air strikes on enemy positions in five days in Salaheddin and Kirkuk provinces, north of Baghdad. Two of the targets were a manufacturing explosive laboratory and a house where a meeting of ISIS leaders was taking place in Hawija, 40 km north-east of Baiji. Three aircrafts were engaged in this mission. They intervened 19 minutes after the receipt of the information from intelligence with "smart weapons".
In January 2011, Iraq signed an initial contract for $3 billion for the acquisition of 18 F-16C/D Block 52s (12 F-16Cs and 6 F-16Ds). On May 2nd, 2014, the first Iraqi F-16D made its first flight in the sky of Forth Worth followed by an official delivery to Iraq on June 5th. Iraqi Air Force pilots started training on two Lockheed Martin F-16Ds on December 16th to Air National Guard facility at Tucson International airport in Arizona. Initially, first aircrafts had to arrive in their Iraqi base in September, but the progression of the Islamic state militants on all the country stopped this transfer together with the fact that Balad AB was not ready and enough secure. On June 25th, 2015, one Iraqi F-16C together with its pilot, Brig. Gen. Rafid Mohammad Hassan was lost during night ACT. On July 13th, two F-16C and two F-16D landed at Balad AB.