Terrorism |

King of Jordan warns of ISIS resurgence

By AFP

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Jordan's King Abdullah and Crown Prince Hussein arrive for the opening session of the fourth ordinary parliamentary session in Amman on November 10th. [Khalil Mazraawi/AFP]

Jordan's King Abdullah on Monday (January 13th) warned that the "Islamic State of Iraq and Syria" (ISIS) was regrouping and was on the rise in the Middle East.

Months after ISIS was ousted from its last Syrian holdout, Abdullah said his "major concern is that we have seen over the past year the re-establishment and rise of ISIS, not only in southern eastern Syria but also in western Iraq".

"We have to deal with the re-emergence of ISIS," the king told TV channel France 24, noting that many foreign fighters from Syria were now in Libya.

Abdullah is scheduled on Tuesday to start a working visit to Europe that includes Brussels, Strasbourg and Paris, the Jordan Times reported.

He is due to meet with European Council President Charles Michel, NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, and members of the North Atlantic Council, and will on Wednesday deliver a speech before the European Parliament.

"From a European perspective, with Libya being much closer to Europe, this is going to be an important discussion in the next couple of days," Abdullah said.

"Several thousand fighters have left Idlib (Syria) through the northern border and have ended up in Libya, that is something that we, in the region, but also our European friends will have to address in 2020," he said.

Regarding last week's spiking of tensions between Iran and the US, Abdullah said he hoped that "in the next several months we set the right tone for the region, which is really to bring the temperature down".

"So far it looks like de-escalation. We hope that that continues to be the trend. We cannot afford instability in our part of the world," he said.

Jordan, whose stability is seen as vital for the volatile Middle East, hosts some 1.3 million refugees from neighbouring war-torn Syria.

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