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Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD)

Armed Forces Minister welcomes liberation of Manbij

17 August 2016

Freeing of the strategic town in northern Syria is the latest gain in the fight against Daesh.

Mike Penning, Minister of State for the Armed Forces, has welcomed the liberation of Manbij from Daesh.

The loss of the northern Syrian town is the latest setback for the terrorist group, which has seen its territory, financial resources and leadership increasingly dwindling.

RAF airstrikes supported Syrian democratic forces on the ground over recent weeks, including providing close air support close to Manbij and striking at Daesh defensive positions in the town.

UK intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capability also supported Coalition strikes, with UK Reaper flying over 500 hours, providing key information on targets to Coalition partners.

Minister for the Armed Forces Mike Penning said:

"Manbij's liberation is a significant development in the fight against Daesh in Syria."

"The RAF supported the liberation with airstrikes over recent weeks, alongside our Coalition partners."

"We thank all our armed forces for their ongoing commitment and bravery in this vitally important fight."


Airstrikes from RAF Typhoons and Reapers contributed to Coalition strikes in support of freeing Manbij.

Last week, a Reaper patrolled over the town and cleared two groups of extremists engaged in a fire fight with the Syrian moderates.

The week before, a pair of Typhoons conducted a successful precision strike on a fortified Daesh defensive position.

In July, Typhoons destroyed a network of fortified positions on the south western edge of the town, held by a large number of Daesh extremists. A Reaper also conducted two attacks with Hellfire missiles on Daesh fighters and also provided targeting assistance to a coalition air strike.

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