Öykü Altuntaş / Brussels, Nov 5 () – The Small Group of the Global Coalition fighting the Islamic State identified priorities for a coordinated action to defeat the IS and at a meeting in Brussels, on Nov. 5.
At the invitation of the Belgian Vice Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs, Didier Reynders, the group gathered to take stock of recent developments on the ground, delineate a common understanding of IS operations in Syria and Iraq and share its approach to defend against global ambitions of the IS.
According to the statement by members of the Small Group, the cooperative fight has achieved to constraint IS’ freedom of movement, decrease its finances, slow its reinforcement of fighters and counter its messaging.
On the other hand, the group members said they recognized the complexity of the task that still lies ahead, requiring a multifaceted, long-term strategy.
The group members also acclaimed “the dedication and steadfastness of the Iraqi Security Forces, Kurdish Peshmerga Forces, Popular Mobilization Forces, Sunni tribal forces, and Syrian moderate opposition forces, all of whom are critical to the success of this effort”.
The group wowed that they would continue their long-standing support for the Iraqi Security Forces, “as they reclaim areas held by ISIL.”
“We will also support moderate Syrian forces allied with the Coalition, while seeking new opportunities to advance progress on the ground in both Syria and Iraq” said the group’s statement, adding they affirmed the efforts of Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s government to “address corruption, decentralize certain federal authorities, and reconcile ethnic and sectarian divisions in Iraq”.
A ministerial-level summit on the future of Syria has started on Oct. 29, bringing together a wider range of countries, including Turkey, Iran and Saudi Arabia, to reach a political solution regarding the civil war in Syria. However, the talks have failed to set any sort of agreements.
In this regard, the Small Group members told they supported the discussions that have taken place in Vienna, adding they appreciated the participation of the United Nations.
At the meeting in Brussels, member countries also announced their plans in a bid to contribute the coalition.
Germany has announced that it was set to contribute an additional 5 million euros, along with their current contribution of 11 million euros, to stabilize areas cleared of ISIL in Iraq, declared Deputy Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL and Deputy Assistant Secretary for Near Eastern Affairs (Iran and Iraq) Brett McGurk, via his official Twitter account.
Accordingly, Italy stressed their ongoing efforts for training police forces for Anbar, Ninewa, Salahdin, and Kirkuk, to hold areas cleared of ISIL.
“Australia and Sweden extended their advisory and training support for Iraqi and Kurdish Peshmerga forces as we prepare new offensives” Brett McGurk added.
The next meeting of the Small Group of the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL is to take place in Rome in early 2016, announced the statement released by U.S. Department of State.