U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel announced Friday a new international coalition aimed at wiping out Islamic State militants. The plan against the extremist group, formerly known as ISIS or ISIL, calls for stopping the flow of foreign fighters, cutting off its funding, addressing humanitarian crises and "delegitimizing" its ideology, Kerry said.
A new and inclusive government in Iraq is critical to stopping the jihadists, Kerry said. The U.K., France, Australia, Germany, Canada, Turkey, Italy, Poland and Denmark are expected to lend military and financial support in the coalition's fight against ISIS. Kerry said the NATO allies will all stand behind a new Iraqi government “in its efforts to unify the country against ISIL.”
Kerry's comments came while he attended the NATO summit in Wales with President Barack Obama. The U.S. plans to “degrade and destroy ISIL capabilities-and ensure that it can no longer threaten Iraq, the region, and the world,” Kerry said.
The Islamic State recently published two videos showing the beheadings of American journalists James Foley and Steven Sotloff. The extremists' immediate goal was to use the shocking images to intimidate the Obama administration into halting U.S. airstrikes on ISIS strongholds in Iraq.
"We're convinced that in the days ahead we have the ability to destroy ISIL," Kerry said. "It may take a year, it may take two years, it may take three years. But we’re determined it has to happen."