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Killing of Jordanian pilot shows ISIS’ barbarity: Obama

PTI Washington | Updated on March 12, 2018 Published on February 04, 2015

U.S. President Barack Obama has said that a video purportedly showing the burning alive of a Jordanian pilot shows the barbarity of the Islamic State that has seized swathes of territory in Iraq and Syria.

“Today, we join the people of Jordan in grieving the loss of one of their own, First Lt Moaz al-Kasasbeh, cruelly and brutally killed by ISIL terrorists,” he said in a statement.

Obama later met King Abdullah II of Jordan at his office.

Along with his compatriots and other Arab and international members of the anti-ISIS coalition, al-Kasasbeh was in the vanguard of the effort to degrade and defeat the threat posed by the terror group, Obama said.

“Al-Kasasbeh’s dedication, courage, and service to his country and family represent universal human values that stand in opposition to the cowardice and depravity of ISIL, which has been so broadly rejected around the globe. As we grieve together, we must stand united, respectful of his sacrifice to defeat this scourge,” he said.

“Today, the coalition fights for everyone who has suffered from ISIL’s inhumanity. It is their memory that invests us and our coalition partners with the undeterred resolve to see ISIL and its hateful ideology banished to the recesses of history,” Obama said.

“It’s just one more indication of the viciousness (and) barbarity of this organization,” he told reporters in a brief public appearance. “This organization is only interested in death and destruction,” he said when asked about the video.

Earlier, Secretary of State John Kerry welcomed senior diplomatic representatives from nearly 60 nations, including more than 35 Washington-based ambassadors, from partner countries in the global coalition to counter ISIS or ISIL.

The Plenary Meeting of the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL “was an opportunity for coalition partners to reaffirm our shared resolve to address this common threat and discuss how to strengthen, accelerate, and integrate our contributions to coalition efforts,” the State Department said.

Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL John Allen and other senior U.S. officials briefed on progress across the coalition’s five lines of effort to counter ISIL: supporting regional military partners, stopping the flow of foreign fighters, cutting off ISIL’s access to financing, addressing urgent humanitarian needs, and countering ISIL’s messaging.

“That a young patriot — a devout Muslim, one of eight children, just months into married life, with the hopes of his own family in front of him — would be ISIL’s latest victim reminds us all of the evil of this enemy,” Kerry said.

“We will never allow the scourge of ISIL to spread to other countries, or the death of Lieutenant al-Kasasbeh and thousands of innocent victims to be forgotten,” Kerry said.

Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm John Kirby said, “This horrific, savage killing is yet another example of ISIL’s contempt for life itself. The US and its military stands steadfast alongside our Jordanian friends and partners.”

Senator Robert Menendez, Ranking Member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said the perpetrators of this heinous act must be brought to justice and ISIL’s reign of terror over the people of Syria and Iraq must end.

Published on February 04, 2015
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