Editor in Chief: Moh. Reza Huwaida Saturday, October 21st, 2017

Afghanistan not on the Backburner: Mattis

Afghanistan not on the  Backburner: Mattis

WASHINGTON - Even though the Trump administration is primarily focused on Syria, determined to defeat ISIS and provocative actions of North Koreans, US Defense Secretary Jim Mattis on Tuesday rejected the notion that Afghanistan is on the backburner.
“No, it is not. Nothing has changed,” Mattis told reporters at a Pentagon news conference. He was responding to the question if “Afghanistan has become a backburner issue for the Trump administration. The US remained focused on Afghanistan, he said.
The Trump team is currently reviewing its policy on Afghanistan and Pakistan. A decision on the troop level is expected soon. Mattis, however, did not say anything on the review.
“Our military policy in Syria has not changed. Our priority remains the defeat of ISIS. ISIS represents a clear and present danger, an immediate threat to Europe and ultimately, a threat to the United States homeland,” he remarked.

In Syria, Mattis said, the military campaign was focused on breaking and destroying ISIS. “This was a separate issue that arose in the midst of that campaign. The use by the Assad regime of chemical weapons, and we addressed that militarily. But the rest of the campaign stays on track, exactly as it was before Assad's violation.” (Pajhwok)