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Afghanistan not burning back: Mattis

AT Monitoring Desk-KABUL: The US Defense Secretary James Mattis said Tuesday that the Trump administration determination to defeat ISIS in Syria and latest policy towards North Korea is not meant Afghanistan is on the backburner.

Responding to the queries of media reporters in Washington he said, “No, it is not. Nothing has changed.”

He said that US focus on Afghanistan is no variable and we would not let it to be backburner.

He explained that Trump team is currently reviewing its policy on Afghanistan and Pakistan, adding that decision on US troops level is expected in the nearest time.

However, he said nothing regarding the review of US policy towards Afghanistan and Pakistan.

Commenting the issue of Syria he said, “Our military policy in Syria has not changed. Our priority remains to defeat the ISIS. ISIS signals a clear and present danger, an immediate threat to Europe and ultimately, a threat to the United States homeland,” he remarked.

He added that in Syria, the military campaign was aimed at 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.”

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