Britain launched a second day of airstrikes against Islamic militant (ISIL) targets in Iraq on Wednesday (October 1)
Six Tornado fighter planes have been at Akrotiri RAF base in Cyprus since August where they have been used for reconnaissance over the last six weeks.
But now they have begun to unleash their deadly payloads to help push back so-called Islamic State fighters.
Group Captain Chaz Kennett is the station commander:
“The threat from ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) affects us all, and defeating this threat requires an intelligent, patient approach from the coalition of countries who stand together against ISIL. As part of that stand Royal Air Force Tornado GR4 aircraft based here in Akrotiri have taken part in, and will continue to take part in, a coalition effort to destroy ISIL.”
The Iraq War from 2003 to 2011 came to define the premiership of Tony Blair but the current prime minister of Britain, David Cameron highlighted the difference between that conflict and what is happening now at the Conservative Party conference in Birmingham, UK.
“As I speak, British service men and women are flying in the skies over Iraq. They saw action yesterday. and there will be troops on the frontline – but they will be Iraqi, Kurds, and Syrian, fighting for the safe and democratic future they deserve.”
The British government voted in favour of air-strikes on Friday (September 26) and so far two offensive operations have been carried out west of Baghdad.
In the latest strike the RAF hit two ISIL vehicles with Brimstone missiles, including an armed pick-up truck.