MOSCOW (Sputnik) – Former US General and Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition to Counter ISIL, John Allen, has announced that he intends to travel to East Asia to look for more potential members for the US-led anti-ISIL (Islamic State) coalition, which has been launching airstrikes against the extremists in Iraq and Syria, the Jordanian Petra News Agency reports.
Gen. Allen did not specify which countries he intends to go to.
Members of the international coalition are currently providing training to Iraqi soldiers.
Meanwhile the Kurdish militia in Iraq, known as the Peshmerga, has been fighting IS militants on the ground on a regular basis. Their efforts have been backed by airstrikes carried by the anti-ISIL coalition, which was established by US President Barack Obama in September, 2014.
Obama has promised that the coalition would arm Kurds, Iraqis and Syria's "moderate" opposition so that they can fight IS militants on the ground.
IS, a radical Sunni group also known as the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), has been fighting the Syrian government since 2012. The extremists later expanded their operations to Iraq, ceasing vast areas in both countries and declaring the establishment of an Islamic caliphate over the territories under their control.
The United States started carrying out airstrikes against IS targets in Iraq in August. Following the establishment of the international coalition, which currently has 62 participating states, the strikes were expanded to Syria.