AUSSIE WARPLANES HITTING MORE DAESH TARGETS IN IRAQ AND SYRIA – SENIOR AIR FORCE OFFICER

| December 15, 2016

CANBERRA, Australian bomber aircraft are increasingly striking key Daesh targets in Syria and Iraq following changes to Australia's war crimes legislation, a senior air force officer told local media on Thursday.

In June this year, the Australian government modified its war crimes bill to allow servicemen to engage a wider range of hostile terrorist targets without fear of prosecution.

On Thursday, an air force officer told News Corp that since the changes were implemented, Australian bombers were recording a "weapons release rate" of 61 percent, up from 20 percent earlier in the year.

"Previously we would have rejected targets because they fell outside of our rules of engagement and we would have picked up other targets," the officer said on Thursday.

"Now we can actually pick those more difficult targets as well."

The officer said since the laws were amended to relieve pilots and other service men and women of the risk of prosecution, the campaign against Daesh has been much more effective.

He said that pilots were now able to go after harder targets that previously might have been considered outside their jurisdiction.

According to News Corp, those targets include convoys which carry pay for soldiers, as well as communications centers, bomb-making warehouses and production factories.

"(That) is really our forte in terms of the skill set we have both in our air crew and our aircraft capabilities," the officer said.

"Sometimes the harder targets are in more complex areas where there are increased collateral damage concerns."

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

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