RAF Destroys More Than One IS Target Per Day In September

The MoD says the RAF had its busiest month since February.

So-called Islamic State targets in Syria were successfully hit at a rate of more than one per day in September, according to the Ministry of Defence.

The MoD said British air strikes have 'destroyed a significant number' of Daesh command posts, tunnel networks and weapon caches in what has been the UK's busiest month over Syria since February.

RAF Typhoons, Tornados and Reapers have all been used to continue the UK's support of Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) and Iraqi Security Forces, as they attack the last remaining pockets of Daesh in both countries.

The UK has been fighting Daesh, also referred to as the so-called Islamic State (IS), for around four years as part of Operation Shader.

Since 2014, RAF aircrew based in Cyprus have been flying daily missions over Iraq and Syria as part of a coalition of nations fighting IS.

The Operation started as a humanitarian aid mission but has grown into a complex mission to try to defeat IS.

RAF Reaper UAV (MoD Handout)
RAF Reapers have been used in the airstrikes (Picture: MoD).

Defence Secretary Gavin Williamson said: "The fight against Daesh is by no means over and we must continue to stand up for our people and our partners, to ensure their abhorrent and poisonous ideology does not spread to our streets.

"So long as they pose a clear and immediate threat to our national and international security, we will work tirelessly to stamp them out.

"We will not ease off and allow them to reorganise, as this months’ operations show."

    Royal Air Force Typhoon arrives at RAF Akrotiri in support of OP Shader
    RAF Typhoon fighter jet (Picture: MoD).

    Last month, Major General Felix Gedney said Daesh was "very close to being "tactically defeated".

    Major General Gedney spoke to Forces News after finishing a year as Deputy Commander of the US-led coalition, Operation Inherent Resolve, targeting IS in Syria and Iraq.

    He added the UK needs to "learn from previous mistakes" and that Daesh will "continue to be a threat".

    A summary of the airstrikes were released by the RAF:

    • 5 September – Tornados attacked a Daesh supply point in eastern Syria.
    • 7 September – a Reaper destroyed a mechanical excavator constructing defences in eastern Syria.
    • 9 September – Tornados demolished a terrorist command post in eastern Syria.
    • 12 September – a Reaper killed several terrorists in combat in eastern Syria
    • 14 September – Tornados struck a building in eastern Syria where suicide bombers were based.
    • 15 September – Typhoons bombed two entrances to a Daesh tunnel network in northern Iraq.
    • 17 September – Typhoons attacked a terrorist position in western Iraq.
    • 18 September – a Reaper conducted two attacks on Daesh extremists in support of the Syrian Democratic Forces.
    • 19 September – a Reaper delivered two attacks on terrorist positions in eastern Syria, whilst Typhoons bombed a Daesh command post.
    • 21 September – a Reaper killed a Daesh motorcyclist, whilst Typhoons and Tornados struck four terrorist positions in eastern Syria.
    • 22 September – Tornados collapsed a tunnel in northern Iraq, whilst other Tornados and Typhoons bombed three terrorist-held buildings in eastern Syria.
    •  23 September – a Reaper conducted three attacks on Daesh extremists, including a heavy weapons team, in eastern Syria, whilst Typhoons destroyed two further terrorist positions.
    • 24 September – a Reaper attacked Daesh drone and mortar teams, as well as two other terrorist positions in eastern Syria; Typhoons and Tornados hit three further targets.
    • 25 September – a Reaper destroyed a mortar firing on the Syrian Democratic Forces.
    • 26 September – Typhoons struck a Daesh strong-point in eastern Syria.
    • 27 September – a Reaper destroyed a terrorist stockpile of explosives in eastern Syria.
    • 28 September – Tornados bombed a Daesh-held building and a command post in eastern Syria.
    • 29 September – Typhoons silenced a Daesh sniper and hit a concealed weapons cache, whilst Tornados demolished a terrorist-held building in eastern Syria.
    • 30 September – a Reaper destroyed an armoured truck in eastern Syria, Typhoons struck a Daesh-held building.