UK

Bombing Syria: UK Jets Carry Out Second Mission Against Islamic State, As Typhoon Fighters Deployed For First Time

05/12/2015 10:32 GMT | Updated 05/12/2015 12:59 GMT

RAF jets have carried out their second air strike in Syria, targeting another Islamic State-controlled oil field, in a mission defence minister Michael Fallon said was an "impressive achievement".

The Ministry of Defence confirmed Saturday that RAF fighter jets targeted a second Syrian oil field on Friday night.

Typhoons and unmanned Reapers were used in the sortie for the first time since Britain launched airstrikes against IS targets.

The aircraft, alongside Tornado jets, struck the oilfield, in eastern Syria, in an effort to cut off the militant group's financial supply. A similar strike took place on Wednesday.

raf typhoon fighters

Two British Typhoon fighters (as shown above) have been deployed for the first time in Syria and Iraq

The jets took off from Britain's base in Cyprus, RAF Akrotiri, where Defence Secretary Michael Fallon has been visiting.

Speaking to Sky News from the base, he described the mission as an "impressive achievement".

He said: "Last night (Friday) we had the Tornados in action, the Typhoons in action and our unmanned Reapers in action - all of them striking ISIL Daesh (IS) where it hurts."

Fallon told the broadcaster there were no reports of civilian casualties following the strikes, saying UK targets are "very carefully selected to minimise any risk to civilians or collateral damage."

The Ministry of Defence said Tornado jets had earlier flew an armed patrol over the east of Syria "gathering intelligence on terrorist activity".

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

Two Typhoons and two Tornado jets were sent from the British military base RAF Akrotiri in Cyprus on a combat mission after Wednesday's historic votes in the Commons to deploy jets to the region.

The mission came as Prime Minister David Cameron insisted British war planes can help to bring about a political settlement in the civil war-torn country.

RAF Tornado fighter jets had already flown an armed patrol over the east of the country "gathering intelligence on terrorist activity", the Ministry of Defence said.

And in a continuation of operations in Iraq, two Tornados "silenced" a "terrorist" sniper team with a "direct hit" from a Paveway IV guided bomb, it added.

The number of fighter jets based at Akrotiri has been bolstered ahead of further sorties in Syria and continued raids in Iraq against IS, which is also known as Isis, Isil and Daesh.

But the Free Syrian Army opposition group has claimed British intervention is "just a few more jets" over the course of a long campaign.

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