British jets have again attacked Islamic State forces in support of a Kurdish advance in northwest Iraq.
RAF warplanes launched two more rounds of strikes as it emerged that jihadists were already changing tactics to avoid being killed — including ditching large convoys and banning fighters from Twitter to avoid betraying their location.
Militants are also flying their flag from empty buildings to trick coalition forces into bombing them.
The Ministry of Defence said that in the latest attack RAF Tornado GR4s, which have been flying from Cyprus, used a Paveway guided bomb to attack a pick-up truck.
A spokesman said: “Overnight, two GR4s provided vital air support to Peshmerga forces advancing on an Isil [Isis] position, conducting a successful precision attack on an armed pick-up truck with a Paveway IV guided bomb.”
Yesterday’s strike also involved the bombing of an Isis building in Rabia, close to the Syrian border, which was being used by militants to direct heavy fire on the peshmerga.
Meanwhile, Turkey’s parliament was set to vote today to allow foreign forces, such as the RAF, to use its territory for possible operations against Isis.
Turkey still has yet to define what role it intends to play in the US-led coalition against the militants but the motion sets the legal groundwork for any Turkish military involvement or the use of Turkish bases by foreign forces.
News of the overnight strike came as Tony Blair’s former Downing Street chief of staff said that Britain and her allies should be seeking talks with Isis, as the the extremist group is also known, and not just bombing it. Isis has already murdered one captured British aid worker, David Haines, and has threatened to behead another, Alan Henning.
Jonathan Powell, a former diplomat who worked with Mr Blair both in opposition and at No 10, said that while talking to Isis might be politically unpalatable, his experience with dealing with the IRA towards the Good Friday Agreement and more recent history suggested that it was vital to negotiate with the jihadists.
“Every time we do this, we respond with force and we don’t think through the long-term strategy you need,” he told BBC Radio 4’s Today programme.
“I want people to learn some of the lessons from history. We keep making the same mistakes again and again. Every time we meet a new terrorist group we say we will never talk to them and yet we do in the end.
“That kind of channel is what you need to have with all terrorist groups and when you can, you turn that into negotiation.”
UK armed forces got the go-ahead for airstrikes in northern Iraq, in support of a US-led coalition attack Isis in Syria after a parliamentary vote last Friday, although the first strikes were not launched until Tuesday.
The RAF strikes – limited to northern Iraq after MPs voted last year not to intervene in Syria – have already prompted threats of 7/7-style revenge attacks in the UK and warnings that those stopped from travelling to Syria could turn to terrorism in this country.
In his BBC interview, Mr Powell was asked whether contact might already have been made with Isis.
“I think I can tell you it isn’t but it ought to be and that’s my point,” he replied. “When I left government in 2007 I said we should be talking to the Taliban, to Hamas and to al-Qaeda on the basis of my experience with the IRA.
“I was rubbished at the time. And yet now there have been negotiations with Hamas about a ceasefire, there have been negotiations with the Taliban over the release of Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl and the former head of MI5 said we should be talking to al-Qaeda.
The only thing ISIS wants to talk about is you declaring allegiance to the new Caliph. Why are Labour pols so stupid?