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Russia has role to play in fight against Islamic State: Lavrov

AFP , Monday 15 Sep 2014
Sergei Lavrov
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov, speaks to the media after a meeting about the Islamic State group at the French Foreign ministry in Paris, Monday Sept. 15, 2014. (AP Photo)
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Russia on Monday offered its help in the international fight against the Islamic State as global powers step up efforts to help Iraq battle jihadists.

"We have got a contribution to make to the joint efforts in the specific area of ensuring security in Iraq through consolidating society and mobilising it in a fight with terrorism and extremism," Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said in Paris.

"We will do this in parallel with promoting a broader aim of starting a comprehensive, deep analysis of every aspect of terrorist threats," Lavrov said in remarks released by his ministry.

He was speaking to journalists on the sidelines of an international conference convened to formulate a common strategy against the Islamic State militants.

Representatives from around 30 countries and international organisations gathered after the Islamic State beheaded a third Western hostage over the weekend and the United States said it was considering air strikes on jihadists in Syria.

"We are also providing military and other assistance to Syria and other countries in the region which face -- maybe to a lesser extent -- a serious terrorist threat," Lavrov added.

"These are our partners in Egypt, Lebanon, Yemen and Jordan."

In July, Moscow announced it was delivering combat helicopters and fighter jets to Iraq.

Russia, which is locked in a showdown with the West over Ukraine, said last week that unilateral US air strikes in Syria would be a crude violation of international law.

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