Islamic State still not defeated, British PM Theresa May warns Iraq
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Islamic State still not defeated, British PM Theresa May warns Iraq

Iraqi PM Haider al-Abadi declared Saturday that the country’s war against ISIS was officially over.

world Updated: Dec 10, 2017 22:03 IST
Prasun Sonwalkar
Prasun Sonwalkar
Hindustan Times, London
Islamic State,IS in Iraq,IS defeat
Iraqi families carry portraits of their relatives who died in the combat against the Islamic State (IS) group, at the Wadi al-Salam cemetery in the Shiite holy city of Najaf on December 10, 2017.(AFP)

British Prime Minister Theresa May has hailed the announcement from Baghdad that the Islamic State no longer held significant territory in Iraq or Syria, but cautioned that the group has not been defeated yet.

Calling it a historic moment, May said: “I am proud that the UK, as a leading member of the Global Coalition, has stood shoulder-to-shoulder with Iraq to help them open that chapter. I saw the effects of this first hand when I visited last week”.

“We must be clear however, that whilst Daesh is failing, they are not yet defeated.They still pose a threat to Iraq, including from over the Syrian border”.

As a coalition member, May noted that the UK has played a leading role in supporting Iraqi security forces, including the armed forces and the Peshmerga, in the fight against Daesh, using the Arab term for Islamic State.

UK aircraft have launched over 1,350 air strikes in Iraq and trained over 60,000 members of the Iraqi security forces.

“This is why, during my visit, I announced that the UK will invest £30 million in stabilisation support, £20 million in humanitarian assistance and £10m to support counter-terrorist capacity building in Iraq,” she said in a statement.

First Published: Dec 10, 2017 17:53 IST