Coalition Commanders Seek Plan to Counter IS Advance

Published: 14th October 2014 12:22 PM  |   Last Updated: 14th October 2014 12:22 PM   |  A+A-


MURSITPINAR: Commanders from the US-led coalition against Islamic State jihadists will meet in Washington today to discuss halting the group's advance in Iraq and Syria, as air strikes failed to stop militants from reaching the centre of Kobane.       

IS fighters claimed nearly half of the flashpoint town, on the border with Turkey, yesterday -- despite more than three weeks of US-led airstrikes aimed at halting them.  

That failure will be among the main points up for discussion at today's meeting in Washington of military chiefs from the 22 countries in the US-led coalition, as will Turkey's call for the establishment of a protective buffer zone.       

Top brass, including national chiefs of staff, will also meet US President Barack Obama at Andrews Air Force Base outside the US capital, the White House said.    

The generals will "discuss a common vision on the counter-ISIL campaign, challenges and the way ahead," said US Colonel Ed Thomas, spokesman for the chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff.      

Australia, Bahrain, Belgium, Britain, Canada, Denmark, Egypt, France, Germany, Iraq, Italy, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates and the United States will be represented.   

It is the first time such high-ranking military officials from so many countries have come together since the coalition -- which, on paper, now includes about 60 countries -- was formed in September.            

One of the ideas on the table is the creation of a buffer zone along the Turkey-Syria border, which coalition members disagree about and which Washington said will probably not dominate the agenda.            

But US officials were tight-lipped about precisely what is expected to emerge, and said major strategy announcements were not likely.   In their latest air strikes, American and Saudi warplanes targeted seven sites around Kobane, the US military said, including IS staging posts used to try to cut the town off from the outside world.

A Kobane politician who is now a refugee said IS fighters had surrounded the town to the south, east and west, and warned of a "massacre" if they take the northern front bordering Turkey.

Fighting spread to less than a kilometre from the barbed wire frontier fence, with the jihadists carrying out three suicide car bomb attacks in the border zone, said the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

Stay up to date on all the latest World news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp