Coalition summit to ‘take stock’ of anti-ISIS fight

A meeting of representatives from 60 countries in the coalition fighting the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) will “take stock” of the effort to defeat the terror group, a State Department official said Monday.

“It’s an opportunity to take stock of where things stand, obviously, discuss what needs to happen from here, provide updates on where countries stand,” department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said during a press briefing.

{mosads}Secretary of State John Kerry is set to chair the first ministerial meeting on Dec. 3 at NATO headquarters in Brussels.

Psaki said Kerry would deliver remarks to open the summit, and Gen. John Allen, the head of the coalition effort “will be playing a prominent role.”

The Obama administration has gone to great lengths to internationalize the campaign against ISIS, insisting that the U.S. would not solely shoulder the burden.

The U.S., Australia, Britain, Canada and France have all launched airstrikes against ISIS targets in Iraq. Arab nations, including Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Jordan, Bahrain and the United Arab Emirates, have also taken part in or supported the air campaign against the terror organization in Syria.

Psaki declined to detail specific U.S. goals for the meeting, aside from improving coordination among the allies and determining the best path forward.

“The secretary participates in a great deal of phone diplomacy, but always doing that in person he finds to be more effective,” she told reporters. “That’s true I think of many of these countries as well. And so this is an opportunity to have them all there in person.”

The State Department later announced that Allen and Brett McGurk, the deputy assistant secretary of State for Iraq and Iran, will travel to Berlin on Dec. 4 for bilateral meetings with German officials about the ISIS campaign.

Tags Iraq ISIS Jen Psaki John Allen John Kerry Syria

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