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US presses European countries to take Islamic State fighters

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is pressing European members of an anti-Islamic State coalition to take and prosecute citizens of their countries detained in Iraq and Syria.

Pompeo tells foreign ministers and senior officials from some 30 coalition members that it’s imperative to hold thousands of detained fighters from Europe and elsewhere accountable for atrocities.

He’s also urging coalition participants to increase funding for U.N. relief and reconstruction projects.

Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, center, flanked by James Jeffrey, the State Department's Special Representative on Syria, left, and NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg, right, speaks at the State Department in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019, for the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS Small Group Ministerial meeting. (AP PhotoSusan Walsh)

Members of the coalition are meeting Thursday.

Pompeo has dismissed concerns that the U.S. will step back from its leadership of the coalition as President Donald Trump seeks to pull troops back from the Middle East.

Secretary of Sate Mike Pompeo, center, speaks as he is joined by other foreign ministers and foreign officials at the State Department in Washington, Thursday, Nov. 14, 2019, for the Global Coalition to Defeat ISIS Small Group Ministerial meeting. (AP PhotoSusan Walsh)