UK jets carry out second Syria strikes

RAF jets have carried out their second set of air strikes in Syria since MPs backed military action against so-called Islamic State in the country.

It is understood the targets were oil fields again, and the mission involved two Tornados and, for the first time, two Typhoons.

Four Tornado jets launched the first air strikes on Thursday, hitting the Omar oil fields in eastern Syria.

Bombing began hours after MPs gave their backing for military action.

Six Tornados flew to RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus on Thursday to join the operation against IS, which the government refers to as Daesh and is also referred to as Isis and Isil.

The Ministry of Defence said the deployment of the Typhoons plus an extra two Tornados offered a significant increase in strike capacity to both the RAF and the wider coalition air campaign.

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The RAF has been carrying out operations against IS in Iraq since last year. RAF Tornado aircraft have been operating out of the British base in Cyprus and have launched guided bombs aimed at IS targets.

Reaper drones, which are remotely piloted by RAF crews in the UK, have also carried out surveillance and launched missiles at IS targets in Iraq.

To date, the US has conducted nearly all of the air strikes in Syria and Iraq, with France, Australia and Denmark also taking part.

Syria has been embroiled in a bloody armed conflict for nearly five years.

It started as a civil war between President Bashar al-Assad’s government forces and opposition supporters, but jihadist group IS has moved into the country from Iraq and claimed territory.

Source: BBC