US defence chief expects more resources for anti-IS fight

4th May 2016, Comments 0 comments

US Defence Secretary Ashton Carter expressed confidence Wednesday that countries engaged in the fight against Islamic State jihadists in Syria and Iraq will pour more military resources into the battle.

After a meeting of defence ministers of countries involved in the anti-IS coalition, Carter said there was "common recognition that we must all be prepared to do more".

He also said he was "confident that today's meeting will produce additional military commitments".

Defence ministers meeting at the US European Command's headquarters in Stuttgart also examined their economic and political contributions to the campaign, he said.

"It's going to take more to win. We're gonna win but we all need to do more," Carter told reporters.

"This fight is far from over and there are great risks," he said.

But "allowing ISIL safe haven would carry even greater risk. To accelerate ISIL's lasting defeat, all must do more," he said, using another acronym for the Islamic State organisation.

Carter's call to step up the fight against IS came just a week after US President Barack Obama urged members of NATO to increase their defence spending to meet the alliance's target of two percent of output.

Carter also paid tribute to a US Navy SEAL who was killed in Iraq on Tuesday during an IS attack on a position of Kurdish peshmerga forces north of the city of Mosul.

"The whole country has to be grateful to this young man and his family for this sacrifice. But tragically losses will occur.

"This is necessary to protect our country and not to do something would entail even greater risks," he said after the meeting with the defence ministers of Australia, Britain, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Norway and Spain.

Carter said he had proposed that the anti-IS coalition hold another meeting in Washington this summer.


© 2016 AFP

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