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An Iraqi Airways Boeing 737-800, registration YI-ASG performing flight IA-916 from Erbil to Najaf (Iraq) with 98 people on board, was in the initial climb out of Erbil’s runway 18 when the aircraft flew through a flock of birds.
- The aircraft received multiple impacts. The left hand engine (CFM56) ingested a number of birds.
- The crew leveled off at 3,000 feet and returned to Erbil for a safe landing about 13 minutes after departure.
- Several impact marks were seen on the leading edge of the left hand wing.
- A replacement Boeing 737-800 registration YI-ASU reached Najaf with a delay of 6:20 hours.