Recent actions by the United Kingdom and Germany are reflective of coalition nations’ shared commitment to defeat and destroy the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant terrorist group, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said in a statement.
Carter said in a statement the “vote by the United Kingdom to participate in strikes on ISIL targets in Syria is further evidence of the strength of our coalition, and the enduring importance of the special relationship between the United States and the United Kingdom.” He also commended Germany for expanding its contributions to the counter-ISIL effort, including a commitment of up to 1,200 troops as well as additional support for the air campaign.
The secretary called the United Kingdom “a strong member of the counter-ISIL coalition since it began in September 2014” and noted the country’s contributions to air operations, including airstrikes against ISIL targets in Iraq and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions in both Iraq and Syria.
“They have also supported the coalition partners on the ground through the advise and assist mission in Iraq and the Syria train and equip program,” Carter said in the statement. He specifically praised British Prime Minister David Cameron and Secretary of State for Defense Michael Fallon for the “leadership they have shown in the fight against ISIL, as well as the commitment they have shown to our common defense by deciding that the United Kingdom will continue to meet the pledge that all NATO allies made in Wales to invest at least two percent of GDP in defense.”