We, the Foreign Ministers of Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, the United Kingdom, the United States of America and the High Representative of the European Union jointly condemn the brutal violence, hatred and intolerance of the terrorist organisation operating under the name ISIL. It negates basic Islamic and human values and poses a deadly threat to Iraq and Syria, the broader Middle East and beyond, including our own societies. We reaffirm our commitment to UN Security Council Resolution 2170 (2014) and demand the immediate, safe and unconditional release of all those who are kept hostage by ISIL or associated individuals and entities.
Over the last weeks at meetings both regionally and throughout the world leaders have agreed on a comprehensive approach to fight ISIL and to prevent a humanitarian catastrophe. We support this comprehensive and coordinated, long-term effort to degrade and defeat ISIL. In this context we recognize that military action as taken by the US and other countries represents an important contribution to helping Iraq to defend itself against ISIL and to deprive ISIL of safe havens. Humanitarian aid to the internally displaced persons and refugees is paramount as long as they cannot return into their homes. To make this possible we must tackle the military strength, the access to funds and fighters, and the violent radicalising and recruiting influence of ISIL. We also need to support moderate forces opposed to ISIL in both Iraq and Syria. To enhance these efforts we will seek to establish a political dialogue on security and stability within the region and platforms to enable a more structured exchange with countries willing to make constructive contributions against terrorism.
We affirm our support for the new Iraqi government and encourage Prime Minister al-Abadi to rapidly develop and implement his government’s National Program as well as an inclusive policy which unifies the country by representing and defending the interests of all Iraqi men and women. We call upon all countries in the region which have not yet done so to add their voice of support and consider specific contributions in order to further stabilise Iraq.
We support the efforts of the UN Secretary-General’s Special Representative for Iraq, Nikolay Mladenov, to advance an inclusive political dialogue, national reconciliation, and a regional dialogue. We reaffirm the need for a political transition in Syria, based on the Geneva communique, which was endorsed by UNSC. We commend the efforts of the UN Secretary General’s Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, to reopen the prospect of a political solution to the crisis in Syria.
We are committed to restoring stability and peaceful co-existence of all ethnic and religious groups in Syria and Iraq. We welcome the unequivocal stance taken by Muslim leaders against ISIL’s message of intolerance, hatred and violence.
We welcome all contributions to improve security, including by means of training and equipment, in order to push back and defeat ISIL. We commend the national and regional security forces in Iraq and the moderate opposition in Syria who are confronting ISIL on the ground.
We remain committed to providing assistance to the victims of ISIL terror and to continue our humanitarian aid in close coordination with the UN and other international organisations. We will make every effort to strengthen the humanitarian response over the winter season and fully recognise the extraordinary efforts made by host communities within Iraq and by countries in the region to shelter and accommodate great numbers of internally displaced persons and refugees.
Finally, resolute steps to hamper and prevent the flow of fighters and funds to ISIL are urgent. We welcome the adoption of the Global Counter Terrorism Forum’s The Hague-Marrakech Memorandum on Good Practices for a More Effective Response to the Foreign Terrorist Fighters Phenomenon and we welcome the adoption of UNSCR 2178 on threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts. We have also asked the G7 Roma Lyon Group to develop concrete initiatives to address the flows of foreign terrorist fighters and finance to Iraq and Syria. The international conference on combating terrorism financing announced by the government of Bahrain is very welcomed in this respect.