France warns against complacency in fight against so-called Islamic State

PARIS, France said on Tuesday that more needed to be done to totally defeat the so-called Islamic State (IS) terror group in Syria and Iraq and urged ongoing Coalition action and support for local allies to achieve this purpose.

The Foreign Ministry, in a statement responding to questions on a potential US pullout from Syria, said that recent successes against “Daesh (IS)” had not totally eradicated the terrorist threat.

“Despite the Coalition victories and those of its allies these past months, Daesh (IS) remains active in Syria and Iraq. The suppression of this threat remains a goal shared between France and the United States within the framework of the international Coalition against Daesh,” it added.

“The pursuit of Coalition action in support of its local partners is crucial to achieve this objective,” the Foreign Ministry affirmed in a briefing.

The US has around 2,000 troops deployed in northern Syria to support local Kurdish and Arab forces there, but President Donald Trump has hinted they may be pulled out because of the Turkish advance in the area.

France has been critical of the military action by Turkey against Kurdish and Arab forces in northern Syria and warned that the Turkish operation could weaken the front against IS and was distracting from the priority of defeating the terror group.

Turkey is also an important part of the international coalition against IS, but has ignored calls for restraint against Kurdish and local Arab forces which are important allies and often-praised by France and others for their courage and skill in attacking the terror group in Iraq and Syria.

Paris stressed that it remains committed to military operations against what it said was the IS “terrorist organisation”.

“The ministerial meeting in Kuwait last February was an opportunity to recall our determination to militarily combat the terrorist organisation until its complete defeat, and to ensure the stabilisation of liberated territories in Iraq and Syria,” the statement remarked.

Source: Kuwait News Agency