The Jordanian armed forces have carried out dozens of bombing runs over both Syria and Iraq over the past two days, which come in the wake of the Islamic State’s brutal murder of captive Jordanian pilot 1st Lt. Moath Kasasbeh.
“This is just the beginning and you shall know who the Jordanians are,” said a statement released by the Jordanian Armed Forces on local television, according to a CNN report. “All targets were completely destroyed and all the planes returned to their bases safely,” the state-television network reported.
The ongoing air campaign has been dubbed “Moath the Martyr,” in honor of the slain Jordanian pilot.
“We are upping the ante. We’re going after them wherever they are,” Jordanian Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh told CNN. “We’re going to go after them and we will eradicate them. We are at the forefront. This is our fight,” he added.
On Friday, thousands gathered in Jordan’s capital city of Amman, reportedly in support of their government’s aggressive campaign against the Islamic State. Jordan’s Queen Rania reportedly joined the thousands of marchers in the street in a show of solidarity with the Jordanian people. Some held signs that read, “Yes to punishment” and “Yes to the eradication of terrorism.”
The slain pilot’s father emerged on Thursday from a meeting with King Abdullah II and told the media, “Planes from the Jordanian Royal Forces have just arrived from Raqqa [Syria] now after bombarding and pounding them. … God willing, we will end their [Islamic State’s] existence in Syria. We ask God to help us annihilate them.”
Jordan’s air campaign commenced late Wednesday, when its armed forces reportedly neutralized at least fifty-five Islamic State jihadists, including a top ISIS commander who was known as the “Prince of Nineveh.”