Trump to receive 'full range of options' to fight ISIL

Proposals ‘will talk about the importance of our Turkish ally,' Gen. Joseph Dunford says

Trump to receive 'full range of options' to fight ISIL

World Bulletin / News Desk

 President Donald Trump will receive a "full range of options" when leading security officials present him next week with proposals to prosecute the war on ISIL, Joint Chiefs Chairman Joseph Dunford said Thursday. 

The proposals "will talk about the importance of our Turkish ally and making sure our plans are consistent in maintaining a strong alliance with Turkey," Dunford said at the Washington-based Brookings Institution. 

"We will talk about the implications of the Kurdish challenge in the region," he added.

Trump has tasked senior security officials, including Dunford, to formulate a plan to accelerate the anti-ISIL campaign. 

Dunford stressed, however, he could not definitively say whether Washington's ongoing policy to counter ISIL would change. 

In Syria, the policy has focused heavily on the YPG-based Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF). That has strongly vexed Ankara, which has designated the group as the Syrian branch of the PKK.

Turkey and the U.S. designate the PKK a terrorist group, but Washington has resisted doing so with the YPG, saying the organization is a reliable partner in the anti-ISIL fight. 

Under U.S.-led coalition air cover, and with on the ground assistance from U.S. special operators, the SDF has wrested control of cities, towns and villages in northern Syria from ISIL, and is currently leading the battle to oust the terror group from its Syrian capital, Raqqah. 

On Syria's wider civil war, Dunford said a long-term solution must address the "grievances" that sparked the conflict, as well as the interests of the "divergent" stakeholders. 

"It is about as complex and environment as you can" have, he said. "You have Iran, Russia, the Syrian regime, Turkish concerns, Kurdish concerns, Arab concerns, Shia and Sunni concerns.

"We do need to have the vision of how our military actions set conditions on the ground that actually then become a platform from which Secretary [of State Rex] Tillerson goes to Geneva to come up with a political solution" to the crisis, he said.

Amid concerns over the Trump administration's commitment to NATO, Dunford stressed the administration's fidelity to the alliance has not wavered, but said member states must share its security burdens more equally.

He said a meeting last week  with his Russian counterpart "was to make sure that we mitigated the risk and miscalculation and we opened the communication in event of a crisis".

"At a minimum, our military-to-military relationship should be able to do that," he said. 

 

Last Mod: 24 Şubat 2017, 08:39
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