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>> Islamic State may have been driven out of Iraq, but US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson wants that victory to be, quote, enduring. And that's why he was in Kuwait on Tuesday, asking those coalition partners who helped fight the hardline militant to now put their hands in their pockets.
>> In order for reconstruction to begin.>> Tillerson told a conference of coalition partners that communities in Iraq and neighboring Syria, where IS has also largely been defeated need to return to normal life. If they don't he said there's a risk the conditions that allowed Islamic State to seize large swathes of territory will return.
Iraq declared victory over Islamic State in December following a three year war to seize back control of nearly a third of the Middle Eastern country. But the consequences of that war are still felt in the rubble of hospitals, schools, and homes. Iraqi officials say that rebuilding the country will cost more than $88 billion, with housing an urgent priority.
On Tuesday, Tillerson said the US EXIM bank is planning to extend Iraq a $3 billion credit line to help rebuild. However, the US government is not expected to pledge direct financial aid at the conference. It hopes to count, in large part, on Gulf allies to shoulder the burden of rebuilding Iraq.
And for that, Tillerson wants to see not just money but also unity. Last June, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, the United Arab Emirates and Bahrain severed ties with Qatar, accusing it of supporting terrorism. Tillerson told the Kuwait Conference that the diplomatic dispute is counter productive to security in the region.