Italy’s Foreign Minister Paolo Gentiloni said the government is concerned about the recent advances made by the Islamic State (IS) terrorist group in Iraq and in Syria, where a monitoring group says it now controls half the country.
“The Italian government is not just worried about Syria, but also about the possibly even more threatening situation in Iraq,” Gentiloni said.
IS has also seized large areas of Iraq, capturing the strategically-important city of Ramadi in Anbar province after weeks of fighting and has vowed to “liberate” Baghdad and the holy Iraqi city of Karbala.
Gentiloni said an upcoming anti-IS coalition meeting in Paris would aim to forge a strategy to rout the bloodthirsty Sunni extremist group.
“It will be fundamentally important to verify the strategy that we go ahead with,” Gentiloni said.
US Secretary of State John Kerry and Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi will attend the June 2 meeting in Paris, the French government said.
More than 60 countries have joined the US-led coalition to defeat IS, a dozen of which are taking part in 3,000 airstrikes launched against the IS.