RAF air strike kills Isis fighters hiding in Iraqi caves

Defence minister pledges to continue ‘relentless’ fight against jihadists

A Eurofighter Typhoon refuels
A Eurofighter Typhoon refuels: UK-based Cobham is a leader in in-flight refueling technology
(Image credit: AFP/Getty Images)

RAF jets have bombed a cave network being used as a base by an Islamic State cell in northern Iraq.

The Ministry of Defence has confirmed that “two Typhoon jets used Paveway IV precision-guided bombs to strike all six of the caves” in the joint UK-US operation last week, with ten terrorists reported to have been killed.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said: “The strikes continue because the Daesh threat is relentless and so will we be.”

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Intelligence sources had identified the caves and tunnel complex in the Hamrin mountains as an Isis base, reports The Times.

A “thorough check” of the surrounding area for civilians was carried out before the night-time attack last Tuesday, according to a statement on the MoD website.

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Following the operation, “surveillance confirmed all the weapons struck their targets successfully, removing more Daesh fighters from the battlefield and further downgrading the terrorist movement”, the department said.

The Typhoons flew out of RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus and were supported by a Voyager refuelling tanker, reports defence news site DefPost.

The attack follows an RAF air strike on 10 April on Iris terrorists holed up in fortified buildings at an isolated site in northern Iraq, adds the Daily Mail.

The RAF began strikes against Isis in 2014 as part of “a wider strategy to promote peace and prosperity in the Middle East and North Africa”, says the air force’s official website.

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