NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg took part in a virtual meeting of Foreign Ministers of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS on Tuesday (30 March 2021), co-hosted by US Secretary of State Antony Blinken and Belgian Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sophie Wilmès.
“NATO remains committed to the lasting defeat of ISIS,” said the Secretary General. “For several years now, we have been supporting the Global Coalition directly with AWACS surveillance flights and with NATO’s mission in Iraq.” He recalled that following Iraq’s request, Allies agreed in February to expand NATO’s non-combat advisory and training mission. He stressed that the expansion “will continue to be demand-driven, conditions-based, and incremental… with the consent of the Government of Iraq and in full respect for Iraq’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.” Mr. Stoltenberg said that NATO will also continue to consult with key partners including the United Nations and European Union, and to coordinate closely with the Global Coalition going forward.
Secretary General Stoltenberg commended Iraq’s “remarkable progress in fighting Daesh” and praised the reform efforts of Prime Minister Mustafa al-Kadhimi’s government. “We look forward to continuing the excellent cooperation with the Government of Iraq as we expand our mission,” he said.