Islamic State

Ministry of Defence written question – answered on 12th February 2019.

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Photo of Jim Cunningham Jim Cunningham Labour, Coventry South

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence, what recent assessment his Department has made of the strength of Daesh (a) in Iraq, (b) in Syria and (c) throughout the rest of the world; and if he will make a statement.

Photo of Mark Lancaster Mark Lancaster The Minister of State, Ministry of Defence

Daesh now holds just a few square kilometres in the Middle Euphrates River Valley. The Global Coalition assesses there are currently not enough Daesh fighters remaining in Iraq and Syria to make any further significant territorial gains. However, Daesh has dispersed into a cellular structure in order to maintain insurgency activity.

Daesh has also attempted to build a global network of affiliates, branches and sympathisers, the strength of which varies country to country. In many countries, Daesh's local network will continue to pose an enduring threat to regional stability. It will likely be limited to terrorist-type activity due to concerted counter-terrorism and counter-insurgency operations and competition with other militant groups.

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