As US-backed and Russian-backed forces battle to retake the remaining pockets of ISIS-held terrain, Mattis said the US military’s longer-term objective would be to prevent the return of an “ISIS 2.0.”
The attacks, the deadliest on French soil since World War Two, prompted the country to strike back, joining international military operations targeting ISIS and other Islamist militant groups in Iraq, Syria, Libya and elsewhere.
The United Nations this week released a report showing how ISIS in northern Somalia has grown to around 200 fighters from just a few dozen last year.
The Syrian army launched its attack against ISIS there in September, backed by Russian airstrikes and fighting alongside Iran-backed militias and the Lebanese Shi’ite group Hezbollah.
Accompanied by a bodyguard, Naik was making a rare public appearance at the Putra Mosque in Malaysia’s administrative capital, where the prime minister and his cabinet members often worship.
If at all extremism is to be defeated, Muslims must work sincerely by placing Islam at the centre of their arguments – just as extremists use ‘religion’ with impunity to meet their own narrow agenda.
The attack comes days after a Hindu priest was killed by suspected ISIS jihadists in the Muslim-majority nation, which has recently seen a string of brutal attacks by Islamists on religious minorities and secular activists.