Norfolk-based pilots praised for their role in air strikes
- Credit: PA
RAF crews, including those operating Norfolk-based Tornados, have been praised by foreign secretary Philip Hammond, as he described Islamic State's loss of the Iraqi city of Ramadi as a 'significant blow' to the extremists.
RAF air strikes aided the Iraqi forces' push to retake the city of Ramadi, the Ministry of Defence said after operations in the region continued at 'high intensity' during the festive period in the UK.
An RAF spokesman said armed reconnaissance missions by Tornados from RAF Marham, along with Typhoon jets and drones, had taken out targets including large groups of terrorists engaged with Iraqi government forces.
A number of successful strikes were also carried out near the city of Mosul and in support of Kurdish Peshmerga forces in close combat with Islamic State fighters.
Mr Hammond said: 'This is the latest in a series of significant losses for Daesh. These barbaric terrorists have lost 30pc of the territory they once held in Iraq. They have been driven out of cities across the country by Iraqi forces, with support from the UK and the global coalition. The Royal Air Force's close air support operations around Ramadi in recent days have played a key role.'