Published: Thu, February 07, 2019
Worldwide | By Lisa Hogan

Mike Pompeo says USA will continue to fight Islamic State

Mike Pompeo says USA will continue to fight Islamic State

And last week, U.S. intelligence chiefs also broke with the president, saying IS would continue to pursue attacks from Syria, as well as Iraq, against regional and Western adversaries, including the US.

Republicans, military officials and U.S. allies overseas have all questioned Mr Trump's assertion that IS has been defeated.

Earlier in the month, the president's own national security advisor, John Bolton, said in a speech that any withdrawal would be conditioned on the total defeat of ISIS and assurances from Turkey that it would not attack us -allied Kurdish forces in Syria-tall orders, to put it lightly.

The US representative who was in charge of the coalition, Brett McGurk, resigned along with defense secretary Jim Mattis in protest over Trump's decision. "Great nations do not fight endless wars", he said.

Claiming that he had now liberated more than 20,000 square miles in Iraq and Syria, that were once controlled by the militant Islamic State group, Trump declared: "It is time to give our fearless warriors in Syria a warm welcome home".

Earlier this week, Trump said it was important to keep a US military presence in Iraq so that Washington could keep a close eye on Iran, according to a CBS interview aired on Sunday.

Top Donald Trump administration officials indicated today that USA bases in Iraq would have little role in monitoring Iran-backed proxies after the president vowed in a TV interview that American troops would stay in the country to "watch" Iranian forces.

US -led forces in 2001 toppled the hardline Taliban for harboring the al Qaeda militants responsible for the September 11 attacks.

Meanwhile, a report by a U.S. defence department watchdog cited Central Command as saying that without sustained pressure IS "could likely resurge in Syria within six to 12 months".

"We do have to keep pressure on this network. It does have certain components that are still left in it, although they are dispersed and disaggregated they have the capability of coming back together if we don't", Votel said. However, Trump did not name the groups that USA officials were in talks with. But in a comment that came shortly after he highlighted an increase in USA military spending, he warned that in the absence of such a deal, "we will outspend and out-innovate all others by far".

Iraq "rejects being a launching pad for harming any other country", he said during a meeting with U.N. Iraq envoy Jeanine Hennis-Plasschaert at the cleric's base in Najaf.

Lawmakers on the panel expressed skepticism, as Chairman Jim Inhofe, R-Okla., said the Islamic State and A Qaeda are still active in the region, and that "When our military pulls back, Russian Federation pulls forward".

"We have to protect Israel", he told CBS News's Margaret Brennan on Sunday.

As if realizing he was jumping the gun, Trump added, 'But I want to wait for the official word'.

Pompeo said, "To that end, we ask that our coalition partners seriously and rapidly consider requests that will enable our efforts to continue".

Trump last week announced the US withdrawal from a 30-year-old nuclear arms treaty with Russian Federation that banned the countries from possessing certain missiles. And Votel replied, "We were not. So we never had Syria", Trump said in the interview.

The ISIS issue will also come up at a February 6 Senate Armed Services hearing on global threats.

Speaking in Washington, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu pledged that Ankara would work to ensure that the Islamic State group does not rebuild.

Officially, Iraq says there are no United States bases on its soil - only instructors deployed at Iraqi bases. The Republican president appeared in the House chamber just weeks after his demand for $5.7 billion in funding for the US-Mexico border wall triggered a historic 35-day partial government shutdown that more than half of Americans blamed him for, according to Reuters/Ipsos polling.

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