Britain, US to host talks on ISIS in London on Thursday: Officials

United States President Barack Obama (right) meets Prime Minister David Cameron (left) of the United Kingdom in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC, USA on 16 Jan 2015. British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and United States Secre
United States President Barack Obama (right) meets Prime Minister David Cameron (left) of the United Kingdom in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC, USA on 16 Jan 2015. British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and United States Secretary of State John Kerry will host a meeting in London on Thursday of members of the coalition against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), officials said. -- PHOTO: EPA

LONDON (AFP) - British Foreign Secretary Philip Hammond and United States Secretary of State John Kerry will host a meeting in London on Thursday of members of the coalition against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), officials said.

The one-day talks will involve foreign ministers from about 20 countries, including Arab states, to discuss progress so far on tackling the Islamist militants who occupy swathes of territory in Iraq and Syria.

A British official confirmed the meeting will take place at Lancaster House in central London, a fortnight after deadly attacks in Paris by three gunmen claiming to act on behalf of Al-Qaeda and ISIS.

"This will be an important opportunity to take stock and assess the progress made so far in our joint efforts to tackle ISIL's poisonous ideology," Mr Hammond told the Daily Telegraph newspaper, using an alternative name for ISIS. "The key active partners in the coalition, including our Arab partners, will gather in London to decide what more we need to do to degrade and defeat ISIL.

"It's vital that we consider what more we can all do to tackle the issue of foreign fighters, to clamp down on ISIL's financing, to step up humanitarian assistance and continue our co-ordinated military campaign."

The meeting comes after US President Barack Obama and Prime Minister David Cameron met in Washington this week.

Discussions will focus on five areas - foreign fighters, the military campaign against ISIS targets, its sources of finances, strategic communications and humanitarian assistance, the official said.