WATCH: Today the Canadian government released its assessment of the first airstrikes Canadian fighter jets launched at ISIS targets in Iraq on Sunday. Vassy Kapelos has the story.
KUWAIT CITY – The first strikes of Canada’s air war over Iraq were aimed at heavy engineering vehicles used by ISIS.
WATCH: Video of another target hit during airstrike on Nov. 2 in Iraq
“The targeting is quite deliberate…it’s very precise,” said Lt-Gen. Jonathan Vance. “We are certain that the vehicles were static that they were struck. We are certain they had been used repeatedly by ISIL.”
Vance added there was no collateral damage with Sunday’s strikes or concerns about the Canadian aircraft performance. He declined to report ISIS casualties for the specific strikes.
When asked if the government was considering additional measures in Iraq since airstrikes were unlikely to solve the problem, Vance said government and military commanders never claimed the strikes would “do anything but degrade ISIL, and that’s exactly what they’re doing.”
“I think we made clear from the beginning … this conflict isn’t going to be solved by air power alone, nor will it be solved by military power alone.”
The commander said there had been no request made of Canada to participate in military operations in Syria, where ISIS is also active.
When asked why the cost of the mission hasn’t yet been released to taxpayers, and if it was a political or military decision, Vance said the decision was not his.
“We have channels through which we release the costs of the mission. We have provided–through the appropriate channels to the government–the estimate of a cost of this mission. And as the mission terminates and we’re able to determine what all costs were, that will be provided.”
U.S. Central Command said earlier that four strikes hit a large ISIS unit in the vicinity where Canadian planes reportedly dropped their laser-guided bombs.
The attack apparently destroyed five ISIS bulldozers and one dump truck.
With files from Global News reporter Vassy Kapelos and The Canadian Press