French warplanes have carried out fresh raids overnight against the Islamic State (IS) stronghold of Raqqa in northern Syria in the wake of the Paris attacks that left 129 people dead.
President Francois Hollande has vowed to hit back at IS “without mercy” after Friday’s attacks on bars, restaurants, a concert hall and the national stadium, the bloodiest on its territory.
French police also staged a further 128 raids in the early hours of Tuesday (local time), interior minister Bernard Cazeneuve said, as authorities stepped up their investigation into the attacks that left Europe in shock.
The defence ministry said a command centre and training centre were destroyed in the strikes on Raqqa — the heart of the IS group’s so-called ‘caliphate’.
Ten Rafale and Mirage 2000 fighters dropped 16 bombs.
“For the second time in 24 hours the French military conducted an air raid against Daesh in Raqqa in Syria,” it said in a statement, using another name for the jihadist group.
“Both targets were hit and destroyed simultaneously.
“Conducted in coordination with US forces, the raid was aimed at sites identified during reconnaissance missions previously carried out by France.”
Russia also staged air strikes against Raqqa on Tuesday, hours after its Federal Security Service confirmed a bomb caused the crash of a Russian plane over Egypt in October, killing all on board.