Politics

France Drops 20 Bombs On ISIS Stronghold

Twin explosion in southeastern Kobane on 8th October 2014

France has dropped 20 bombs in Syria, on the Islamic State stronghold of Raqqa.

The bombs struck a jihadi recruitment center, training camp and arms depot belonging to the extremist group, the French defense ministry announced, according to Sky News.

The Syrian Observatory for Human Rights reported that no civilians died in the bombings, which hit military targets on the nothern and southern edges of the city.

French foreign minister Laurent Fabius said that France had the "legitimacy" to strike back against ISIS after the jihadi group took credit for the coordinated Nov. 13 terrorist attacks in Paris that killed 129 people and wounded 352, calling Paris "the capital of prostitution and obscenity."

Calling the airstrikes a "political" move, Fabius said that France needs to be "present and active" in order to defeat the group, while President Francois Hollande declared that "France is at war," according to CNN.

Meanwhile, ISIS threatened to focus their next attack on the United States.

"I swear to God, as we struck France in its stronghold Paris, we will strike America in its stronghold, Washington," an ISIS fighter declared in a video released Nov. 16.

Hollande has since proposed strengthening the country's paramilitary police force as well as continuing its attack on ISIS.

"We are not committed to a war of civilizations, because these assassins don't represent any civilization," Hollande said to a joint session of parliament. "We are in a war against terrorism, jihadism, which threatens the whole world."

"Terrorism will not destroy France, because France will destroy it," Hollande added.

French police completed 150 raids throughout the country since a state of emergency was declared Nov. 13.

French Interior Minister Bernard Cazaneuve said that authorities seized a rocket launcher and bulletproof vest, and they put 104 people under house arrest.

Authorities arrested seven people in Belgium during weekend raids and released five of them.

Seven terrorists died during the attacks, but 26-year-old French citizen Salah Abdeslam remains at large while authorities search for him.

Sources: Sky News, CNN / Photo Credit: Karl-Ludwig Poggemann/Flickr

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