RAF Reaper drones hit Daesh terrorist targets in Syria and Iraq

RAF Reaper unmanned drones, which are controlled from RAF Waddington near Lincoln, have hit Daesh terrorist targets in Syria and Iraq over the Christmas period.

The Ministry of Defence (MoD) said an RAF Reaper struck a Daesh checkpoint south of Raqqa in Syria with a Hellfire missile on December 25.

On Boxing Day another Reaper patrolled over northern Iraq, where it destroyed a terrorist vehicle with a Hellfire, then supported a coalition air strike on a Daesh tunnel entrance.

Reaper, a Remotely Piloted Air System (RPAS), part of 39 Squadron Royal Air Force. The Reaper has completed 20,000 operational flight hours in theatre, and is operated from Kandahar Air Field (KAF) in Afghanistan.

Reaper, a Remotely Piloted Air System (RPAS), part of 39 Squadron Royal Air Force. The Reaper has completed 20,000 operational flight hours in theatre, and is operated from Kandahar Air Field (KAF) in Afghanistan.

The Christmas airstrike is the first official time UK-controlled drones have hit targets in Syria since MPs voted in favour of extending airstrikes from Iraq.

The Tornado GR-4 from 617 Squadron takes off to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Dambusters raid in the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight. Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

The Tornado GR-4 from 617 Squadron takes off to commemorate the 70th anniversary of the Dambusters raid in the Battle of Britain Memorial Flight. Photo: Steve Smailes for The Lincolnite

In addition to drone strikes, operations against the Daesh terrorist network have continued at a high intensity over the holiday period, MoD said.

Armed reconnaissance missions have been flown daily by RAF Tornado GR4, Typhoon FGR4, and Reaper aircraft, focusing on supporting the Iraqi security forces during their offensive operations in Ramadi, and also in northern Iraq in the area around Mosul.