The Foreign Secretary welcomed powerful international commitment to support the Iraqi government, help Iraqi and Kurdish forces defend themselves against ISIL and deal with the humanitarian consequences of ISIL’s barbarity.
Speaking from the NATO summit in Wales, the Foreign Secretary said:
ISIL is not an invincible military force. At every level, military and ideological, we have to challenge their messaging and challenge their capability.
It’s going to be a long campaign; not necessarily a military one, but a campaign to turn the tide, to cut off the funding, to undermine the recruiting, to cut off the support that they’re receiving from some of the countries around the world and to push ISIL back.
We in Britain have made no commitment to take part in any air strikes as yet, but we’ll certainly consider that possibility if we think that it is the best and most effective way to support a credible and inclusive Iraqi government.
This morning (Friday 5 September), Foreign and Defence Ministers from ten countries met to agree an international strategy to counter the threat from ISIL and address the harm it has done to communities in Iraq and Syria. The meeting was jointly convened by the UK and the United States, and led by Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and US Secretary of State John Kerry.
Speaking after the meeting, the Foreign Secretary said:
The clear message coming out of here is that we have to have a comprehensive response to the ISIL challenge. It’s not just about whether or not we should get involved in air strikes. Everyone has a role to play and we should look at all elements, though it is clear we need regional support with a new and inclusive Government of Iraq leading the efforts.
The countries in attendance at this morning’s joint UK/US chaired meeting were Canada, Australia, Turkey, France, Germany, Italy, Denmark and Poland.
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