Washington, D.C. – Today, U.S. Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA), Chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee, issued this statement following his meeting this afternoon with Iraq’s Ambassador to the U.S., Lukman Faily:

“During my meeting, Ambassador Faily reiterated his government’s concern that the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) presents a threat to his country and the security of the region.  He repeated the Iraqi government’s request for airstrikes or drone strikes against this group – a request that Iraq has been making to the White House since August 2013 and with greater urgency over the past few months.  We shared our mutual concern that the White House has denied drone strike requests as ISIS has advanced in broad daylight.  I urged the Ambassador to convey my continued expectation that the Iraqi government be more inclusive, especially given the degree to which ISIS has exploited longstanding political rifts between Sunni groups and the Shi’a-dominated government.”

Note:  Earlier today, the House Foreign Affairs Committee received a classified briefing from Ambassador Anne W. Patterson, Assistant Secretary of State for the Bureau of Near Eastern Affairs, on the security situation in Iraq.  A readout following that briefing is available HERE.