Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Thursday called on the international community to boost funding to defeat the Islamic State terror group.
His efforts come as the global economy grapples with the financial fallout of the coronavirus pandemic that has infected more than 6.5 million people and killed nearly 387,000 around the world.
“It’s true that the pandemic is putting enormous pressure on all of our budgets, but we urge your nations to pledge toward our goal of more than $700 million for 2020,” he said during a Ministerial Meeting of the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS.
“That said, our fight against ISIS continues and will for the foreseeable future. We cannot rest,” Mr. Pompeo continued.
“We must continue to root out ISIS cells and networks, and provide stabilization assistance to liberated areas in Iraq and Syria,” he said.
The U.S. was joined by Italy in leading the virtual conference of 31 nations who have pledged to combat violent extremism.
ISIS leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi died in October after detonating a suicide vest while being pursued by U.S. forces, and Abu Hassan al-Muhajir, an ISIS spokesman, is believed to have been killed shortly afterward.
Top Trump administration officials last year repeatedly declared that the ISIS caliphate was almost completely defeated. But analysts and former officials have since warned that the terrorist organization remains a threat to the U.S. and its allies.