Conservatives plan to extend ISIS mission

Stephen Harper has signaled that the Conservatives will be seeking to extend the campaign against Islamic State militants next week for at least another six months.

The original mandate, set to expire in April, saw Canadian soldiers sent to Iraq in a noncombatant role, mainly to train Iraqi forces and local militias while CF-18 fighter jets attacked ISIS targets in Iraq.

Harper has signaled that CF-18s may start attacking targets in Syria soon, provided the Syrian government supports such a move.

As of March 16 Canada’s CF-18s had flown 412 sorties. Canadian troops were also involved in a brief firefight with ISIS militants in January.

There have been no Canadian casualties to date from this mission.

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