“The battle with Daesh is destined for all Iraqis. But it’s not their battle alone but the whole world, because terrorists target with their dark ideology all humanity, its culture, and morals,” Ayatollah Sistani said through a representative after nationally-televised Friday prayers.
The Daesh terrorist group controls parts Iraq and Syria. The Takfiri group has been carrying out heinous crimes in the areas under its control.
“It’s essential to join together all efforts and expand the parameters of countering this movement,” said Ayatollah Sistani.
The Iraqi top cleric’s comments came a day after Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi told France 24 television that Baghdad would welcome Russia to carry out airstrikes against militants on its soil.
Russia has been conducting air raids against Daesh and other terrorist groups in Syria, but Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has said Moscow was not planning airstrikes in Iraq.
Since August 2014, the United States and some of its allies have been conducting airstrikes against what they say are positions of the Takfiri terrorist group in Iraq.
Some members of the US-led coalition have also been pounding purported Daesh positions inside Syria without any authorization from Damascus or a United Nations mandate since last September.
Neither campaign has so far managed to dislodge the group, which has overrun several parts in each country.
According to the United Nations, more than 21,000 Iraqis have either lost their lives or sustained injuries due to the acts of violence and terrorism in the embattled Arab country since the beginning of the current year.
In a statement released on Thursday, UN High Commissioner for Human Rights in Iraq Fadel Ghraoui pointed to the dramatic rise in the number of Daesh operations against Iraqi people, noting that a total of 6,238 Iraqis were killed and another 14,933 injured between January 1 and October 1, 2015.