Ambassador Faily participates in Panel Discussion on ISIS, Iraq and the region

The Atlantic Council
The Atlantic Council

On Monday, July 21, 2014, Ambassador Lukman Faily participated in a panel discussion at the Atlantic Council in Washington, DC. The event, "The Enemy of My Enemy: An Uneasy Coalition and the Threat of ISIS" discussed the current situation in Iraq, the geo-strategic implications of the rise of ISIS and regional players.

In his remarks, Ambassador Faily spoke about the existential threat that ISIS poses, and noted that this threat is unlike anything Iraq or its neighbors have seen before. He continued by highlighting that ISIS targets anybody and everybody, whether they are Muslim, Christian, Sunni Imams or moderate Shia who do not swear allegiance to the views of ISIS.

Ambassador Faily stressed that the current crisis in Iraq can only be quelled with a comprehensive strategy that includes military action but also political, economic, humanitarian and diplomatic efforts by all affected parties. Ambassador Faily thanked the United States and said that Iraq welcomes President Obama's decision to send advisors to Iraq to support Iraq's armed forces. He called on the United States to consider further US-Iraq counter-terrorism coordination to include air strikes in order to protect Iraq's borders against further influx of terrorists from Syria; to target terrorist camps and supply convoys in remote areas; and to enable Iraq to effectively conduct counter-terrorism operations in urban areas that have been occupied by ISIS.

Discussing elections in Iraq, Ambassador Faily said that although Iraq is facing a crisis, the process of forming a new government is underway and this must not be undermined.

The event was moderated by Barry Pavel, Vice President and Director, Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security of the Atlantic Council. Ambassador Faily joined distinguished panelists Frederic Hof, Senior Fellow, Rafik Hariri Center for the Middle East of the Atlantic Council; Bilal Saab, Senior Fellow for Middle East Security, Brent Scowcroft Center on International Security of the Atlantic Council; and Michael Singh, Managing Director of Washington Institute for Near East Policy.

To read Ambassador Faily's full remarks in English, click here.
To read Ambassador Faily's full remarks in Arabic, click here.