Brussels: The European Parliament Thursday urged the European Union (EU) to enforce sanctions against business bodies related to the Islamic State (IS) in a bid to cut off its resources.

The creation and expansion of the "Islamic caliphate" and the activities of other extremist groups in Iraq and Syria, are a direct threat to the security of the European countries, Members of European Parliament (MEPs)said in a statement after a resolution vote.

The murders of journalists James Foley, Steven Sotloff and aid worker David Haines by the IS were strongly condemned by the European Parliament, Xinhua reported.

In the long run, only a genuine political solution to the Syrian conflict can help to neutralise the IS threat, they said.

MEPs called upon the EU to use all possible means to help Iraqi national and local authorities combat the IS, including appropriate military assistance.

To stem the flow of material and financial resources to the IS, MEPs urged that the UN arms embargo and asset freeze be enforced more effectively.