Kerry Reprimands Congress over ISIS Fight

Kerry Reprimands Congress over ISIS Fight
Sun Jul 17, 2016 22:08:14

US Secretary of State John Kerry has criticized Congress for its unwillingness to help President Barack Obama defeat the Daesh (ISIS / ISIL) Takfiri group in Iraq, saying the lawmakers have refused to allow more troops deployed to the Arab country.

“[W]e are doing everything in our power to put additional pressure on them [Daesh], and I believe their days are numbered,” Kerry told CNN on Sunday.

However, he said the Obama administration’s efforts in Iraq were impeded by Congress’ inaction.

“Congress displayed absolutely zero willingness to vote to do that, and if people have a willingness to show that now that has changed, the administration will listen to any legitimate plan, any legitimate way to do more,” the top US diplomat explained.

He said Washington is steadily increasing it pressure against the terror group in Iraq and Syria and Obama welcomes the input of others, including Congress.

The US and its allies have been conducting airstrikes against purported ISIS positions inside Syria and Iraq since 2014.

Moreover, Washington announced last week that it will deploy 560 more troops to Iraq, raising its troop level there to more than 4,600.

“President Obama is open to any legitimate ways of moving faster that meets the test of our security needs and of what the Congress is willing to support,” Kerry said.

On Thursday, US Army General Joseph Votel, the head of the US military's Central Command, said the US military was considering fresh deployments to Iraq.

"As we continue on the mission, I think there will be some additional troops that we will ask to bring in," Votel said in an interview in Baghdad, Iraq.

The US claims its forces in Iraq are seeking to shore up local militant groups against ISIS.

This is while earlier in June, Reuters reported that US military officials have admitted the failure of their efforts to “retrain and reunify” Iraq’s regular army and generate enough combat units.

S/SH 11

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