No ground troops in Iraq, says French foreign minister

imgFrance’s foreign minister stressed Thursday that its role in an international coalition to combat ISIL will see it continue airstrikes against the militant group, but it has no intention to send in ground troops.

“I’m crystal clear about it. It is necessary that Iraqis themselves are involved,” Laurent Fabius stated via his twitter account.

Earlier in September, the United States started an anti-ISIL coalition of more than 50-nation including 10 Arab states, to tackle ISIL in Iraq and Syria.

For months, the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL) has been running riot in swathes of Syria and Iraq, declaring an Islamic caliphate and driving an estimated 1.2 million Iraqis from their homes. Its militants have particularly targeted Shia Muslims, Turkmen, Ezidis, and Christians.

On Wednesday, France’s premier told parliament that his country’s intervention in Iraq would be “long-term,” saying it “would carry out further air strikes in the coming days until the Iraqi army regains superiority.”

Fabius underlined Thursday that there are two “opponents” to fight in Syria, both” [Syrian leader] Bashar al-Assad and the group DAECH [the Arabic acronym of ISIL].”

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