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Counter-Daesh Operations: Syria and Iraq

Oral Answers to Questions — Defence – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 22nd October 2018.

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Photo of Adam Holloway Adam Holloway Conservative, Gravesham 12:00 am, 22nd October 2018

What contribution UK forces are making to counter-Daesh operations in Syria and Iraq.

Photo of Gavin Williamson Gavin Williamson The Secretary of State for Defence

RAF strikes in Iraq and Syria will continue until Daesh has been defeated in both Iraq and Syria. In Iraq we have about 500 personnel participating in the coalition’s programme of training.

Photo of Adam Holloway Adam Holloway Conservative, Gravesham

Can the Secretary of State give some indication of what we are doing to maintain the momentum against a fractured Daesh?

Photo of Gavin Williamson Gavin Williamson The Secretary of State for Defence

It is important to remember that although Daesh has been considerably weakened and the amount of territory under its control has been massively reduced, it remains a great threat. In the last month alone the RAF has made 27 strikes against it, which goes to show that the tempo of operations is not actually slowing down. We cannot take it for granted that Daesh has been defeated, and we must continue to put pressure on it.

Photo of Wayne David Wayne David Shadow Minister (Defence) (Armed Forces and Defence Procurement)

It is a year since Raqqa was liberated from Daesh. There is still work to be done on securing all parts of the city, but attention needs to be given to how it will be rebuilt in the future. What plans are being drawn up, and what resources are being allocated to the reconstruction?

Photo of Gavin Williamson Gavin Williamson The Secretary of State for Defence

The Department for International Development is leading this process, and the Ministry of Defence will continue to give it as much support as possible. We recognise the important role that must be played in respect of reconstruction following such a devastating conflict.