MOSCOW, September 13 (RIA Novosti) – US President Barack Obama has chosen to appoint former top US commander in Afghanistan, as the lead coordinator of international efforts to fight the Islamic State (IS) militant group, also referred to as the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS), or Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), Reuters reported Friday, citing a US official.
According to the official, retired Marine Corps General John Allen, who served as head of US and international forces in Afghanistan between July 2011 and February 2013, would be named as the Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition against ISIL.
On Wednesday, Obama announced plans to defeat the IS. He said Washington would be extending its airstrikes from Iraq to Syria and would provide support, equipment and training to Kurdish and Iraqi forces and Syria's opposition in order to respond to the threat.
On Thursday, it was announced that Gulf Cooperation Council members, including Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, together with Egypt, Iraq, Jordan and Lebanon agreed to join the US-led coalition aimed at defeating the IS militant group.
The IS has been fighting the Syrian government since 2012. In June 2014, it launched an offensive in Iraq and seized vast areas in both countries, proclaiming an Islamic caliphate on the territories under its control.