France launches 'massive' airstrike on Isis stronghold in Syria after Paris attack
French fighter jets launched their biggest raids in Syria
to date targeting the Islamic State’s stronghold in Raqqa just two days
after the group claimed coordinated attacks in Paris that killed more
than 130 people, the defence ministry said.
“The raid ... including 10 fighter jets, was launched simultaneously
from the United Arab Emirates and Jordan. Twenty bombs were dropped,”
the statement said, adding that the mission had taken place this
The operation, carried out in coordination with US forces, struck a
command centre, recruitment centre for jihadists, a munitions depot and a
training camp for fighters, it said.
A defence official was quoted by Associated Press as saying the
strikes were ‘massive’ and had destroyed two jihadi sites in Raqqa.
“The first target destroyed was used by Daesh (another Arabic acronym
for IS) as a command post, jihadist recruitment centre and arms and
munitions depot. The second held a terrorist training camp,” a ministry
In the aftermath of the attacks on Paris, the French President,
François Hollande, said terrorists strikes were an “act of war” on France, “organised and planned from the outside”.
He said the attackers wanted “to scare us and fill us with dread”,
but warned France’s retribution would be swift and unflinching.
“We are going to lead a war which will be pitiless. Because when
terrorists are capable of committing such atrocities they must be
certain that they are facing a determined France, a united France, a
France that is together and does not let itself be moved, even if today
we express infinite sorrow.”
Information from inside Syria suggests the bombings had cut water and electricity supplies.
Activists in Raqqa have said the bombings have caused “panic” in the city.