Anti-IS coalition meets in Denmark to assess campaign | Touch Latest Local,World,Tech,Entertainment,Health,Sport News
24 February 2018 00:00:00 AM Breaking News

• WORLD

Anti-IS coalition meets in Denmark to assess campaign


Key members of the US-led coalition fighting the Islamic State group in Iraq and Syria meet in Copenhagen on Tuesday to assess the campaign's next steps as the jihadists' "caliphate" collapses.

Though officials warn that military action will continue for some time, they are generally upbeat about the progress and quickening momentum of the fight.

After months of brutal, street-by-street combat, IS has now lost control of most of its stronghold of Mosul in Iraq, while the jihadists have become largely isolated in their Syrian bastion of Raqa.

Pentagon chief Jim Mattis and his Danish counterpart Claus Hjort Frederiksen are among the senior leaders from 15 countries attending Tuesday's summit.

"We're going to look to the future, determine what more is needed, if anything," Mattis told reporters ahead of his arrival in Denmark.

Several coalition countries are keeping a nervous eye on the region as IS-held territory diminishes.

Thousands of foreign fighters remain in Iraq and Syria, and coalition nations -- particularly in Europe -- are bracing for a possible wave of battle-hardened jihadists returning home.

According to a senior US administration official, Interpol has identified 14,000 foreign fighters it knows has travelled to Syria and are still alive.

The largest numbers come from Tunisia, followed by Saudi Arabia.

Thousands more have travelled from Europe, including 100 or so from Denmark, said the official, who asked not to be named.

The international law enforcement agency Interpol is now part of the anti-IS coalition, becoming the alliance's 68th member.

Islamic State has lost much ground in Syria and Iraq© Provided by AFP Islamic State has lost much ground in Syria and Iraq

- Bombs in cupboards -

The campaign against IS began in autumn 2014 and has seen the Iraqi security forces -– backed with coalition training and air power –- reverse humiliating losses and recapture several key cities including Ramadi and Fallujah.

Iraq's second city Mosul is now mainly back under Iraqi control, though IS continues to hold the Old City on the west side, where its fighters are preparing for a bloody last stand.

In Syria, coalition-backed Kurdish and Arab forces have been gradually recapturing towns and villages, with the focus now on isolating Raqa ahead of a major offensive to seize back the city after more than two years of jihadi rule.

US President Donald Trump came to power on a pledge to destroy IS.

Though much of the groundwork had already been laid and the coalition had conducted thousands of strikes, US military leaders credit Trump with delegating them greater authority, enabling a quickening pace of operations.

Critics say the additional strikes have accelerated the rate of civilian deaths.

The administration official said one request for the coalition would be for more de-mining support to help clear areas abandoned by IS.

The jihadists have rigged explosives to homes, buildings and even the doors on people's cupboards, and clearing these bombs and mines is a massive undertaking.

Officials also want quicker access to funds and resources to help with stabilising and protecting areas after IS has left.

Recommended

Loading...

Related Posts

News Masturbation, computer games reasons most would-be recruits fail fitness test – Army

The Chinese military traced the reasons a growing number of would-be

Read More

Number of Ethiopians needing food aid surges to 7.7 million due to drought

The number of Ethiopians who need food aid owing to drought has surged by more t

Read More

France's Le Pen hails 'historic' result after reaching runoff

French presidential election candidate for the far-right Front National (FN) par

Read More

White House leakers have new target: H. R. McMaster

National security adviser H.R. McMaster has become the latest target of the leak

Read More

Two Americans were killed and a third was wounded in a raid in Afghanistan against Islamic State group militants

Two Americans were killed and a third was wounded in a raid in Afghanistan again

Read More

Germany’s orange ecstasy pills have Trump’s name — and face — all over them

Police and parents have long worried about the dangers of drugs designed to look

Read More

To Ray Davies, America is a beautiful but dangerous place

To Ray Davies, America is a beautiful but dangerous placeImage copyrightALEX LAK

Read More

Texas: At least 8 dead in a shooting at house party

At least eight people are dead, including the suspect, after a shooting at a hom

Read More

'We are ready for all out war, we will hit with nuclear attacks of our own'- North Korea tells U.S

The North Korean government, led by supreme leader Kim Jong-un, after its milita

Read More

US to honour dumb Australia migrant deal

US to honour dumb Australia migrant dealImage copyrightEPAImage captionVice-Pres

Read More

Also Read

Music Buhari signs new agreement on anti-corruption, tax admin, others

President Muhammadu Buhari Thursday signed nine international agreements that

Read More

Samuel Eto'o pays surprise visit to Tony Elumelu, presents him a signed jersey (photos)

After visiting Peter of P-Square and his family at their Ikoyi home yesterday, C

Read More

A World Of Misery At My Very Door: A Story

Today I want to tell a story. It’s not my story, though I do make a cou

Read More

LAGOS @50: Education District 1 celebrates Ambode’s inclusive govt

Lagos—The leadership of  Lagos  Education District 1, represent

Read More

2019: I may run against el-rufai –shehu sani

Senator Shehu Sani is a first time lawmaker, representing Kaduna Central on

Read More

If You Ever Feel Phantom Cell Phone Vibrations, You May Have A Serious Problem.

You may have heard of a condition known as phantom limb, which is the sensation

Read More

NACOSS DEPARTMENTAL DAY_ SPEECH BY FORMER NACOSS PRESIDENT

A very motivating speech from the former NACOSS president.He spoke on how sensit

Read More

Sixteen dead as rubbish dump collapses on homes in Sri Lanka

A landslide at a rubbish dump in Sri Lanka’s capital has killed 16 people

Read More

Honored to welcome Georgia Prime Minister, Giorgi Kvirikashvili - Trump

Honored to welcome Georgia Prime Minister, Giorgi Kvirikashvili to the @WhiteHou

Read More

Don Williams dies at 78

Country music star and Hall of Fame member, Don Williams, has passed away at the

Read More