Iraqi Foreign Minister Mohamed al-Hakim joined NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg for a panel discussing the future of the MENA (Middle East and North Africa) region after the so-called Islamic State (IS; formerly ISIS/ISIL) during the first day of the Mediterranean Dialogues (MED) summit in Rome on Thursday.
In spite of the Iraqi Government's success in reclaiming large amounts of territories from the North of Iraq, al-Hakim said the threat of IS was not over. "We have defeated DAESH militarily, but not yet, not completely, and this is really crucial for us. We realise that on our border with Syria, sits about 2,000 fighters," said al-Hakim.
Stoltenberg echoed al-Hakim's concerns, saying "ISIS is still there, partly underground, and partly they still control some territory, especially in Syria. So we should not underestimate that organisation, even though they were not able to establish their territorial Caliphate they aimed at just a few years ago."