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Kuwait, UK to sign new military cooperation accord

Fallon: Urgent need to defeat Daesh in Iraq, Syria strongholds

Image Credit: AFP
A photo provided by the Kuwaiti news agency KUNA on August 27, 2017, shows Kuwaiti Prime Minister Shaikh Jaber Al Mubarak Al Hamad Al Sabah, right, meeting with British Defense Secretary Michael Fallon in Kuwait City.
Gulf News

Manama: British Defence Secretary Michael Fallon said his country intends to sign a new military cooperation agreement with Kuwait.

In an interview with Kuwait News Agency (Kuna), one day ahead of his visit to Kuwait, Fallon said that he would discuss with Kuwaiti officials plans to buttress military cooperation and joint action to overcome security challenges.

The defence secretary pointed out that Britain was ready to expand military training cooperation with Kuwait.

The British Royal Air Force use the same “Eurofighter” aircraft and increasing joint exercises and training would help take military relations to new heights, he added.

Fallon said that the British Royal Air Force Aerobatic Team, known as the Red Arrows, would perform a display in Kuwait next month, an indication of how distinguished military relations between the two countries are.

He reiterated his country’s commitment to the security and stability of Kuwait and the Arabian Gulf region.

Fallon is scheduled to hold talks with Prime Minister Shaikh Jaber Al Mubarak Al Hamad Al Sabah and Deputy Prime Minister and Defence Minister Shaikh Mohammad Al Khaled Al Hamad Al Sabah, the state-run news agency said.

Talks will cover ways to tackle the Gulf’s security challenges, especially those related to the conflicts in Yemen and Syria, as well as the progress made in Iraq and the next steps of the international coalition against the Daesh terror group.

Fallon stressed the highly significant role of Kuwait as the host country of the command of the anti-Daesh international coalition.

He also expressed appreciation of Kuwait’s humanitarian role in Iraq and its support to people from the war-ravaged areas there.

The international coalition has liberated some four million Iraqis from the grip of the Daesh militants after driving them out of Mosul, he said.

However, Fallon stressed there was still much to be done in Northern Iraq. Thus, there is a need to discuss the next steps of the international coalition’s campaign, he said.

On post-Daesh Iraq, the British official underlined the need for upholding the Iraqi government’s control over the liberated areas and the launching of a political reconciliation among all Iraqis, especially the people of Anbar Province with a view to winning the hearts and minds of Sunnis through assuring them that they would have a role in building Iraq’s stability.

On Daesh claiming responsibility for the recent terror attacks in Europe, Fallon said that the group must be defeated first in its main strongholds in Iraq and Syria, particularly in the Syrian city of Raqqa, in order to curb their ability to carry out terror attacks in other parts of the world.