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Danish Government will continue significant contribution to the fight against ISIL

05.12.2016  09:36

Minister for Foreign Affairs Anders Samuelsen says:

“The fight against ISIL is one my – and the Danish Government’s – top foreign policy priorities. We must combat ISIL and their ilk militarily and economically, while also fighting and shifting their narrative. And we must ensure that the peoples of liberated areas are quickly helped back on their feet. I am extremely proud of the significant efforts made by Denmark and stationed Danes thus far.

I am pleased that the Foreign Policy Committee supports Denmark’s new contribution to the coalition, which increases our training contribution to about 150 people.
Today we also informed the Committee that in 2017 the Government will continue its existing contributions to the coalition, while bringing our aircraft contribution back to Denmark as planned.”

Minister of Defence Claus Hjort Frederiksen says:

“The Government is now laying the groundwork to expand the Danish training efforts in Iraq by adding much needed capabilities in the form of an engineering and construction team. The team will train Iraqi forces in demining and support our current training contributions. As planned, we will also be bringing our fighter jets and transport aircraft home, so I would like to thank our stationed Danish personnel for their vital contributions, which have made a great difference in the coalition’s overall effort.”

In mid-December, the Danish fighter jets and the Danish transport aircraft will return to Denmark as planned. After the withdrawal of the two aircraft contributions, Denmark will continue to provide significant military contributions to support the fight against ISIL.
Significant progress has been made in the past year in the fight against ISIL, but it is necessary for the coalition to continue exerting significant military pressure on the terrorist organisation in Iraq and Syria. As efforts progress, the coalition will continue to adapt its efforts to optimally support the overall objective of the military campaign: To defeat ISIL.

Background
Today the Danish Government consulted with the Danish Parliament’s Foreign Policy Committee regarding the expansion of Denmark’s contribution to the education and training of Iraqi security forces, in the form of a new engineering and construction team. The expansion will increase the Danish contribution’s capacity to educate and train the Iraqi security forces in areas such as handling improvised explosive and field-related engineering services.

From January 2017, Denmark’s military contribution to the fight against ISIL will consist of a radar contribution of up to approximately 30 people, a capacity building contribution in Iraq of up to approximately 150 soldiers, a contingent of special operations forces of up to approximately 60 people and up to approximately 20 staff officers working with the coalition’s headquarters.

In addition to military contributions to the coalition’s fight against ISIL, Denmark is also providing significant civilian support in the form of stabilisation and basic reconstruction of the liberated areas of Iraq and opposition-controlled areas of Syria. This support is channelled through the new, DKK 332.5m regional stabilisation programme for Syria and Iraq launched in October 2016. The programme objectives include supporting the Free Syrian Police and the Syrian Civil Defence, known as “White Helmets”, as well as helping to restore basic services to the beleaguered civilian population after ISIL is dislodged from Iraq.  In addition, DKK 28.5m has been allocated in 2016-2017 for the coalition’s efforts to curb the influx of foreign fighters, which includes preventing radicalisation in local populations in Jordan and Lebanon, cutting off ISIL’s cash flows, and countering ISIL propaganda. Jens Madsen, former head of the Danish Security and Intelligence Service, is participating in the coalition’s efforts to counter the financing of terrorism.

For more information, contact:
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Denmark: Press Advisor Lars Peter Levy, tel. (+45) 41904124