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IS will be vanquished, says Italian PM

Matteo Renzi

Rome: The Islamic State jihadist group will lose against the international military coalition of countries fighting it and will be defeated culturally, economically and diplomatically, Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi said Wednesday.

“The unscrupulous terrorists of Daesh (IS) must know they will lose their battle,” Renzi told journalists here after a meeting his Iraqi counterpart Haider al-Abadi.

“Iraq and with Iraq the whole international community will overcome this challenge, not only through the international coalition but also culturally, economic and diplomatically,” he said.

The international coalition is driving back IS and retaking territory from the group and Italy is one of the countries leading the battle against it with over 700 security personnel deployed, Renzi noted.

More than Italian 100 paramilitary Carabinieri police officers are training police in Iraq, he said, adding “a united and stable Iraq can help stabilise and bring peace to the Middle East region”.

Abadi said Iraq aimed to defeat IS in Iraq “by the end of the year” calling for a “political solution” in his country and in neighbouring war-wracked Syria.

“Iraqis are united in the fight against terrorism and we have had many victories on the ground,” Abadi said.

He cited the “harsh blow” delivered to IS in the central city of Ramadi, which Iraq says was completely recaptured from the group this week.

Abadi also recalled that troop reinforcements were also sent to Mosul “in recent days” to liberate it from IS, which overran the northern city in June 2014.

The coalition should not play a combat role in Iraq but should help with training and air cover, Abadi said.

“We don’t want other forces fighting that are not Iraqi,” he stated.

“We now need international aid to restore essential services such as schools, hospitals and clinics and enable people uprooted by the conflict to return to their homes.”

Help from international experts is needed to diversify the troubled Iraqi economy, Abadi said, inviting Italian companies to invest in Iraq.

“We can no longer depend solely on oil,” Abadi warned.


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