Coalition Members Pledge Increased Support

JB Andrews, Md.—Multiple partner nations have pledged increased support for the anti-ISIS campaign, to include more strike aircraft and increased deployments of trainers to help local forces hold ground it has taken from the group. Defense Secretary Ash Carter used the most recent meeting of the defense ministers of counter-ISIS nations to call on the coalition for increased support in training, combat aircraft, money, or any other way to bolster the fight. UK Defense Minister Michael Fallon said following Wednesday’s meeting that his country will double the number of troops it has deployed inside Iraq within the next two months, including medics and engineers. France is redeploying the Charles de Gaulle aircraft carrier to the fight and Australia is expanding its training program, focusing on law enforcement and border guards, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said during a press conference following the meeting at JB Andrews, Md. Previous meetings of the ministers led to updated plans of how to work together in the fight, but more is needed to use recent momentum on the ground to destroy the group. The dozens of defense ministers are identifying “both our enduring requirements” and reviewing a detailed “matrix of national contributions—going through it row by row, column and column, and country by country” during the two-day meeting. The second day of the meeting, on Thursday, will be led by the US Department of State, and focus on increased financial support to defeating ISIS. (See also: Tracking Airpower in the AOR and AFCENT’s Rapid Evolution.)