The Ministry of Defence has confirmed that a British aircraft participated in the recent coalition air strike in Syria.

Australia and Denmark have also issued statements claiming they were involved in the strike.

It is understood that the British aircraft was a Reaper remotely piloted air system.

An MoD spokesperson said:

“We can confirm that the UK participated in the recent coalition air strike in Syria, south of Dayr az Zawr on Saturday, and we are fully cooperating with the coalition investigation.

The UK would not intentionally target Syrian military units. It would not be appropriate to comment further at this stage.”

Russia has claimed that 62 Syrian troops had been killed in the strike.

Operation Shader is the operational code name given to the British participation in the ongoing military intervention against the Islamic State.

The operation began in Iraq on the 26th of September 2014, following a formal request for assistance by the Iraqi government.

Prior to this, the Royal Air Force had been engaged in a humanitarian relief effort over Mount Sinjar, which involved multiple aid airdrops by transport aircraft and the airlifting of displaced refugees.

By October 2014, the intervention had extended onto Syria with the Royal Air Force only mandated to conduct surveillance flights over the country.

In December 2015, the House of Commons approved British airstrikes against IS in Syria. The UK is one of several countries directly involved in the ongoing Syrian conflict that started in March 2011, utilising Tornado, Typhoon and Reaper aircraft.

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