France hits ISIS where it hurts: Oil stockpiles

French DM announces two new strikes on ISIS's oil infrastructure, in attempt to cripple monetary resources of the jihadists.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

French Rafale fighter jet (illustration)
French Rafale fighter jet (illustration)

The French army has stepped up its bombing campaign against the Islamic State (ISIS) group's oil infrastructure with two new strikes in eastern Syria, Defense Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian said Tuesday.

"We struck again twice last night in the Deir Ezzor region, firstly on an oil distribution station and secondly on a gas separation plant," Le Drian told journalists on the sidelines of a forum on African peace and security in Dakar, Senegal.

It was France's fourth wave of strikes in Syria since President Francois Hollande decided in September to join the campaign there against ISIS, and the second in as many days.

On Monday, Le Drian announced a strike on an oil supply center near Deir Ezzor, on the border between Iraq and Syria.

ISIS has been raking in large amounts of money thanks to its oil sales; it was revealed in documents seized in July that Turkey cooperated with ISIS by taking part in the jihadist group's cross-border black market oil sales.

The two previous waves of French airstrikes targeted training camps for foreign jihadists who were suspected of preparing attacks in France.

Hollande said on Thursday last week operations would be expanded to include "all those sites from which terrorists could threaten our territory."

The president also said France would deploy its nuclear-powered aircraft carrier - the flagship of the French navy - to boost operations against ISIS in Syria and Iraq.

AFP contributed to this report.