Nations come together to chart future course to tackle ISIS extremists
As Afghanistan is witnessing US troops withdrawal along the set September timeline by Biden administration, the latter met with other members of global coalition on Monday to chalk down modus operandi for future to tackle the Daesh extremists or ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria). Meeting follows airstrikes launched by US against Iran backed militias near Syria-Iraq border.
The 83 member bloc, which is seven year old, held a meeting co-chaired by US Secretary of State, Antony Blinken and Luigi Di Maio, the Italian Foreign Minister. The key agenda addressed by participating nations was the common concern around rising IS and steps to completely defeat it the Islamist group. The group still holds a strong ground posing threat in Syria and Iraq, it is gradually spreading its branches in parts of Africa. The coalition discussed important efforts and plans to stabilize regions liberated from IS. The other key issues in discussion included curbing the coronavirus pandemic and addressing the need to step up fight against climate change.
Addressing the coalition formed by 77 other member nations and 5 organizations, Blinken and Di Maio said that it is not time to put our guard down against the destruction of ISIS across Iraq and Syria. Di Maio urged for special attention to Africa, particularly the Sahel region where IS is gaining strong hold. “Daesh can still be a threat and attract support,” Di Maio said.
Blinken added that though IS has tasted defeat, the elements in Syria and Iraq “still aspire to conduct large-scale attacks.” “Together, we must stay as committed to our stabilization goals as we did to our military campaign that resulted in victory on the battlefield,” he said. Blinken announced US contribution of aid $436 million to help displaced Syrian people as well as surrounding countries. He also called out for repatriation and rehabilitation or prosecution of around 10,000 IS fighters who are imprisoned by Syrian Defense Forces. He added sanctioning of Niger native Ousmane Illiassou Djibo who is a “key leader of the Daesh affiliate in the greater Sahara”. Djibo is labeled as a global terrorist and is this barred from any US transactions along with frozen US assets.