RAF Continues Missions Over Iraq
Typhoons and Tornados Destroy Islamic State Tunnels
The MOD has released details of continuing RAF combat missions over Iraq as part of Operation SHADER, the British contribution to the fight against the Islamic State (aka ISIS, ISIL, Daesh).
The RAF is supporting the Iraqi security forces as they continue their work to prevent the Islamic State resuming operations inside the country.
Islamic State Tunnels in Tigris Area
On Saturday 15 September, a coalition surveillance aircraft identified two entrances to a tunnel network used by the Islamic State, concealed in the hills above the Tigris some fifteen miles north-west of Mosul, and guided a pair of Typhoon FGR4s to the target. Each of the tunnel entrances was successfully struck in turn, using Paveway IVs, and collapsed.
In northern Iraq, the security forces tracked several Islamic State fighters to a set of tunnels in the bank of the Tigris, a few miles north of Bayji, on Saturday 22 September. A pair of Tornados on a reconnaissance mission were diverted to the area and scored a direct hit on the tunnel entrance. A second pair of Tornados patrolled east of Abu Kamal, Syria, and employed a Paveway IV to destroy a building used by the Islamic State as a weapons store on the banks of the Euphrates. Typhoons bombed a building held by the Islamic State in the same area.
Image: A pair of Royal Air Force Tornado GR4 aircraft performing a display at RAF Coningsby in Lincolnshire – the RAF has had Tornados deployed to the Middle East region for more than 20 years – further proof of the versatility and capability of this exceptional aircraft (Crown Copyright, 2012).