Deadly role for Stevenage firm in Libya

A Stevenage engineering firm is playing a key role in hitting military targets in Libya.

Missiles developed at MBDA in Stevenage are being used to combat forces loyal to Colonel Gaddafi after the UN passed a resolution to enforce a no-fly zone over the country.

Storm Shadow, a 5m long bunker-busting air-to-ground cruise missile used in Iraq in 2003, has been launched by RAF Tornados, although the numbers fired have not been released by the MOD. The French air force also has the missile in service on its F1 Mirage and Rafale aircraft.

An expert said Brimstone missiles can be seen on a Tornado aircraft taking off from RAF Marham on Tuesday as part of Operation Ellamy on the RAF website. These have been used in Afghanistan to pinpoint moving or static targets. The warhead can pierce tank armour.

The same Tornado is also fitted with ASRAAM air-to-air missiles for the first time the expert said. The MOD confirmed Typhoons are flying in-theatre with these.