Assad won't be included in fight against ISIS: French President Hollande

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Paris, Aug 28: French President Francois Hollande on Thursday rejected the idea of including Syrian President Bashar-al-Assad in the fight against the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS). In a speech delivered at the annual conference of the French ambassadors, Hollande said this while stressing that the forces fighting the ISIS militants needed more western support.

Hollande called Assad an ally of the jihadists and said no choice could be made between two barbaric forces. Assad has drawn flak from the international community for targetting his own people for putting up protests against his regime over the past few years.

Hollande said there could be no choice between two barbaric forces

Syrian rebels have been fighting the tyrannical regime of Assad for more than three years now with the West's support. However, the rise of hardline Islamist groups in the country and their threats to neighbouring Iraq has put the western policy-makers in a dilemma.

Paris said it had provided weapons to the "moderate" opposition in Syria but diplomats said there was a difference in opinion between Paris and Washington on whether there should be more such support in the future.

Hollande also said that his government was ready to increase its support for Iraq. "To fight Islamic State, the first condition is for Iraqis to unite," Hollande said.

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