France to Ask Russia to Step up Strikes on IS in Syria

World | December 21, 2015, Monday // 12:23|  views

French President Francois Hollande (C) and French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian (2-L) arrive on French Navy aircraft carrier `Charles de Gaulle`, at sea off the coast of Syria, 04 December 2015. EPA/BGNES

French Defence Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian is visiting Moscow on Monday to ask Russia to increase strikes against the Islamic State (IS) group in Syria, AFP reported. 

Le Drian will meet his Russian counterpart Sergei Shoigu to discuss also how Paris and Moscow can share intelligence relating to the organisation of Islamic miltants also known by its Arabic acronym Daesh.

"We will have an exchange [of views] on what we consider to be terrorist groups, and how Russia could strengthen its activities against our sole enemy - Daesh," quoted Le Drian as telling French journalists before the visit.

Western nations have complained that Russia is primarily bombing rebels, including moderates, which threaten the regime of Bashar al-Assad, rather than targeting Daesh.

The presidents of France and Russia, Francois Hollande and Vladimir Putin, agreed last month to step up and coordinate the attacks on Daesh in Syria.

Hollande's working visit to Moscow took place in the aftermath of the November 13 terrorist attacks in Paris, in which Islamist extremists killed 130 people and injured over 350. Daesh claimed responsibility for the attack.

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Tags: France, Russia, Hollande, Putin, Le Drian, Shoigu, Islamic state, Daesh


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