France, Turkey say air strikes not enough to defeat Islamic State


France and Turkey said that air strikes alone are not enough to defeat the Islamic State militant group which has taken over territory in much of Iraq and Syria.

The US, along with a number of its allies, has waged a campaign of aerial bombing against Islamic State militants in both Iraq and Syria.

“We have seen that air strikes will not be enough to eradicate terrorism, won’t even be enough to stop it progressing, we need to act with a common strategy,” said Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in a joint news conference with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius.

“As we’ve said we don’t want a buffer zone, but a security zone and a no-fly zone absolutely have to be put in place because this crisis is of a different dimension,” he said.

Fabius stressed that the fight against the Islamic State should not take the focus away from the atrocities committed by the regime of Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad.

“We also have to make sure that the pretext of the struggle against [Islamic State] doesn’t reinforce those who created this monster, that is, the regime of Bashar Al-Assad,” Fabius said. “France and Turkey are united on this front. We should not be choosing between the barbarism of [the Islamic State] and that of the regime.”

“The strikes if they’re necessary, and they are, are not going to be enough. So the moderate opposition which is fighting both against the regime and [Islamic State] must be reinforced urgently,” he said.