News story

RAF Tornados conduct more long-range strikes in Libya

British aircraft have again conducted long-range strikes against some of Colonel Gaddafi's remaining military bases, as NATO continues with Operation UNIFIED PROTECTOR to enforce United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973.

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A Royal Air Force Tornado takes off from RAF Marham

A Royal Air Force Tornado takes off from RAF Marham [Picture: Corporal Brad Hanson, Crown Copyright/MOD 2011]

On Thursday, Royal Air Force Tornado GR4s participated with other allied aircraft in a major strike by NATO against a significant command and control facility located near Birak, over 400 miles (644km) south of Tripoli, in the Sahara.

Major General Nick Pope, the Chief of the Defence Staff’s Communications Officer, said:

NATO surveillance had demonstrated that the site, much used by the Gaddafi regime in the past, was once more in active use as a military headquarters. Numerous military targets within the compound were destroyed.

A similar long-range Storm Shadow attack was also launched by GR4s on Saturday - again flying from RAF Marham in Norfolk - to hit a major military staging post used by Gaddafi’s troops in the town of Sebha, 30 miles (48km) from Birak.

RAF aircraft also helped NATO maintain its armed reconnaissance patrols over other parts of the country, and on Friday afternoon Tornado and Typhoon aircraft destroyed a command and control installation near Hun in central Libya.

On Saturday morning, a similar mission spotted a former regime main battle tank at Bani Walid, firing from a concealed position. A Paveway guided bomb from a Typhoon destroyed the tank. The same patrol subsequently located a multiple rocket launcher nearby, hidden in a tree line, and destroyed that vehicle as well with another Paveway.

Published 12 September 2011