Michael Fallon meets Middle East partners to discuss international response to ISIL.
Mr Fallon met with allies in Saudi Arabia yesterday and Bahrain today to discuss regional security and international co-ordination to counter ISIL ahead of this week’s United Nations General Assembly.
At the Jeddah and Paris conferences there was strong agreement on the need for a co-ordinated response to the ISIL threat. In taking action to degrade and destroy ISIL terrorists it is important that key regional partners continue to play a leading role.
The UK supports the air strikes launched by the US and regional allies last night which run alongside the action the UK has already taken in the form of reconnaissance flights, military equipment and humanitarian aid.
The UK government continues to discuss what further contribution the UK may make to international efforts to tackle the threat we all face from ISIL.
The UK has a long-standing defence relationship with both Saudi Arabia and Bahrain. In Saudi Arabia the UK assists with the delivery and support of Typhoon and Tornado aircraft. Bahrain is also a key location for the UK, with onshore basing and ships located at Mina Salman Port.
While meeting serving Royal Navy personnel in Bahrain Mr Fallon witnessed the structural work being carried out to improve the navy’s facilities.
The UK already has a long-established presence in the region and in my discussions I have re-emphasised the UK’s continuing commitment and opportunities to strengthen co-operation.