US wins backing of 10 Arab states for campaign against Islamic State

By REUTERS
September 11, 2014 22:23

 
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JEDDAH - The United States signed up Arab allies on Thursday to a "coordinated military campaign" against Islamic State fighters, a major step in building regional support for President Barack Obama's plan to strike both sides of the Syrian-Iraqi frontier.

After talks in Saudi Arabia's summer capital Jeddah, Secretary of State John Kerry won backing from 10 Arab countries - Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and six Gulf states including rich rivals Saudi Arabia and Qatar - for a coalition to fight the Sunni militants that have seized swathes of Iraq and Syria.

"Arab nations play a critical role in that coalition, the leading role really across all lines of effort: military support, humanitarian aid, our work to stop the flow of illegal funds," Kerry told a news conference.

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