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Obama weighing options for rescuing Iraqi refugees

President Barack Obama delivers a statement about the ongoing U.S. military actions and humanitarian drops in northern Iraq on the south lawn of the White House on August 9, 2014.
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President Barack Obama delivers a statement about the ongoing U.S. military actions and humanitarian drops in northern Iraq on the south lawn of the White House on August 9, 2014.

President Barack Obama will make a decision within days about whether to send the U.S. military to rescue Iraqi refugees trapped on a mountain, the White House said Wednesday.

Deputy national security adviser Ben Rhodes said Obama is considering a range of options, including airlifts and trying to establish a safe passage down.

Rhodes said Obama will receive recommendations from a Pentagon team that's gone to northern Iraq to assess the situation.

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Thousands of Iraqis fled to Sinjar Mountain after coming under siege from Islamic jihadists.

Rhodes said that while the U.S. has been able to provide food and water to the refugees, they can't sustain themselves by staying on the mountain.

Rhodes said the U.S. could coordinate a rescue mission with Kurdish forces as well as allies such as Britain.

—By The Associated Press