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Obama, 'air strikes on IS in Iraq to be long project'

WASHINGTON D.C. (AA) - U.S. President Barack Obama on Saturday said the air strikes against the Islamic State militants - formerly known as Islamic State of Iraq and Levant will be a long project. "We’re not moving our embassy anytime soon.  We’re not moving our consulate anytime soon,  and that means that, given the challenging security environment, we’re going to maintain vigilance and ensure that our people are safe," he said at a press conference at the White House.
Obama said the crisis with IS, which unfolded in Iraq early June, is not a problem to be resolved in weeks.
In order for the Iraqi security forces to mount an offensive and be able to operate effectively with the support of the population in Sunni dominated areas depends on a government that the Iraqi people and the Iraqi military have confidence in, he added.
Obama said he had spoken with the U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron and French President François Hollande to join the U.S. to deal with the humanitarian crisis in northern Iraq where thousands of Ezidis have been stranded in Mount Sanjar amid IS' recent violent upsurge.
"I was very pleased to get the cooperation of both Prime Minister Cameron and President Hollande in addressing some of the immediate needs in terms of airdrops and some of the assets and logistical support that they’re providing," he said.
Obama noted the U.S. has been vigilant on fighters and jihadists in Syria and in Iraq who might potentially launch attacks outside the region against Western and U.S. targets.
"So there’s going to be a counterterrorism element that we are already preparing for and have been working diligently on for a long time now," he said. 
The U.S. Air Force have, so far, conducted two rounds of air strikes with jets and drones and have made two airdrops in northern Iraq with Obama's authorization on Friday. IS militants upped their offensive and moved towards northern Iraq one week ago, forcing thousands of Ezidis, who fear assaults from IS, to seek shelter in Mount Sinjar close to Mosul.

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