World, Middle East

NATO to 'expand' support for Iraq in anti-Daesh fight

Bloc will step up efforts to help and train Iraqi forces, Secretary General says

Ahmet Sait Akçay   | 25.10.2016
NATO to 'expand' support for Iraq in anti-Daesh fight North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg delivers a speech during a press conference on the agenda of the NATO Defence Ministers Meeting, in Brussels, Belgium on October 25, 2016. ( Dursun Aydemir - Anadolu Agency )

Ankara

By Hasan Esen and Ahmet Sait Akcay

BRUSSELS/ANKARA

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg pledged Tuesday to step up efforts to help Iraq in fighting Daesh.

Speaking at a press conference in Brussels ahead of the meetings of NATO Defence Ministers, Stoltenberg said the NATO would expand its support into Iraq in the coming months.

"The best way to do that is to train local forces, to build local capacity. We will train and step up our efforts to help up Iraqi forces," he said, adding they had already trained hundreds of Iraqi officers in Jordan – in areas including military medicine and defusing improvised explosive devices.

"Because when our neighbors are more stable, we are more secure," he said.

Stontenberg went on to say that NATO was committed to sustaining the anti-Daesh coalition's momentum "so that ISIL (Daesh) can be defeated once and for all."

"NATO itself is now offering direct support with our AWACS surveillance aircraft. Providing surveillance to improve the Coalition’s air picture," he said.

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