Reuters reports: World powers backed military measures on Monday to help defeat Islamic State fighters in Iraq, boosting Washington’s efforts to set up a coalition, but made no mention of the tougher diplomatic challenge next door in Syria.
France sent fighter jets on a reconnaissance mission over Iraq, a step closer to becoming the first ally to join the United States in new bombing there since President Barack Obama declared his plans to establish a broad coalition last week.
Paris also hosted an international conference, attended by the five U.N. Security Council permanent members, European and Arab states, and representatives of the EU, Arab League and United Nations. All pledged to help the government in Baghdad fight against Islamic State militants.
But a statement after Monday’s conference made no mention at all of Syria – the other country where Islamic State fighters hold a wide swathe of territory. Iraq attended Monday’s meeting but Syria did not, nor did its main regional ally, Iran. [Continue reading…]