The United States said the announcement by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) of the establishment of an Islamic Caliphate on the territory it controls in Iraq and Syria “has no meaning”.
US State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said yesterday: “We’ve seen these types of words or comparable claims from ISIS before.
“This declaration does not mean anything to the people in Iraq and Syria,” pointing out that the organisation is trying to “control the people by fear and edicts”.
The White House said that Islamists who are leading a major offensive in Iraq had launched a “campaign of terror using terrible acts of violence and repressive ideology which pose a grave threat to the future of Iraq”.
White House spokesman Josh Earnest said: “ISIS is not fighting for a stronger Iraq; ISIS is fighting to destroy Iraq. And that’s why you’ve seen this administration work closely with Iraq’s political leaders to encourage them to unite the country as they confront this existential threat.”
The Iraqi Parliament is scheduled to hold its first session today.
Psaki pointed out that Washington “continues to urge Iraqi leaders to come to an agreement on the three key positions, the speaker, the president and the prime minister” to form a new government.
The organisation of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS) announced, on Sunday, the establishment of an “Islamic Caliphate” and pledged allegiance to its leader Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi as “Caliph of Islam” and changed its name to “Islamic State”.
ISIS controls large areas in the north and east of Syria. The organisation has been able to expand its territories during the past few weeks to larger areas in northern and western Iraq.