- Title: US envoy says fight against Islamic State will go on after Trump win
- Date: 16th November 2016
- Summary: BERLIN, GERMANY (NOVEMBER 16, 2016) (REUTERS) U.S. SPECIAL PRESIDENTIAL ENVOY FOR THE GLOBAL COALITION TO COUNTER ISLAMIC STATE, BRETT MCGURK, ARRIVING FOR INTERVIEW U.S. FLAG MCGURK SPEAKING TO JOURNALIST (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. SPECIAL PRESIDENTIAL ENVOY FOR THE GLOBAL COALITION TO COUNTER ISLAMIC STATE, BRETT MCGURK, SAYING: "Well I would just say obviously we had a close election, the country's divided on a number of issues, I think there are divisions in the world on a number of issues. One thing that really unites the Americans, united both candidates in the presidential campaign, unites the world, is this fight against Daesh (Islamic State). This is a threat to all of us, we have to prosecute this campaign in a very smart and effective way and I think that's something that this global coalition's really historic, unprecedented coalition - military, law enforcement, intelligence, counter-messaging, counter-propaganda, it just runs the gamut - and just today here in Germany for the past eight hours we have all the different working groups. From the U.S. government we have Treasury here, Department of Justice, Department of Defence, Homeland Security with counterparts from all around the world comparing information, trading information and talking about what went right, some things we might improve upon as we look ahead over the next 90 days. So I think this is something that will continue because it is just inherent and essential and a common denominator across all of these different countries. And despite other divisions in the world the fight against Daesh is something that really unites the world." MCGURK'S HANDS (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. SPECIAL PRESIDENTIAL ENVOY FOR THE GLOBAL COALITION TO COUNTER ISLAMIC STATE, BRETT MCGURK, SAYING: "So all of that planning, all the training that we've done as a coalition - we've trained 50,000 Iraqi army, Peshmerga, police and tribal fighters as a coalition, and those units are performing remarkably well, they're performing heroically, they're now in the city of Mosul clearing neighbourhood by neighbourhood. It is very difficult, it will take a long time, but the operation right now is on track and it's on track because of the brave fighters on the ground, but also because [of] what we've done as a coalition to help them succeed." VARIOUS OF MCGURK SPEAKING TO JOURNALIST (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. SPECIAL PRESIDENTIAL ENVOY FOR THE GLOBAL COALITION TO COUNTER ISLAMIC STATE, BRETT MCGURK, SAYING: "Turkey did a very good job on its side of the border, but then moving into Syria and creating this buffer has really helped pin Daesh into Syria without any outlet now to the outside world. It's very difficult for these foreign fighters to get into Syria. In 2014 there was about a thousand a month, in 2015 about 500 a month, today it's really negligible. And even in their propaganda when Daesh says 'come join our movement', they're not telling people to come to Syria anymore because it's very hard to get into Syria and once they're in Syria it's almost impossible for them to get out." JOURNALIST TAKING NOTES INTERVIEW ENDING / MCGURK LEAVING
- Embargoed: 1st December 2016 19:57
- Keywords: U.S. Special Presidential Envoy Brett McGurk global coalition Islamic State foreign fighters information sharing Donald Trump
- Location: BERLIN, GERMANY
- City: BERLIN, GERMANY
- Country: Germany
- Topics: Conflicts/War/Peace,Military Conflicts
- Reuters ID: LVA00158P1G07
- Aspect Ratio: 16:9
- Story Text: U.S. special envoy Brett McGurk said on Wednesday (November 16) that the U.S.-led coalition's fight against Islamic State would continue after President-elect Donald Trump takes power in January.
McGurk, U.S. President Barack Obama's envoy in the campaign against the Sunni Islamist group, predicted a seamless transition of power to Trump despite the divisive U.S. presidential election campaign.
"One thing that really unites the Americans, united both candidates in the presidential campaign, unites the world, is this fight against Daesh," McGurk said, using an Arabic term to describe the militant group.
"This is a threat against all of us," he told Reuters before Thursday's (November 17) meeting in Berlin of officials from 29 of 60 countries in the coalition fighting Islamic State.
The U.S.-led coalition has been carrying out air strikes against the group, which controls areas of Syria and northwest Iraq. During his election campaign, Trump called for tougher military action to destroy the militants.
McGurk defended the Obama administration's approach, and said six months of training for 50,000 Kurdish, Iraqi and other forces were paying off in the twin offensives against the Islamic State strongholds of Mosul in Iraq and Raqqa in Syria.
He said the coalition had planned carefully to protect civilians and prepare for the displacement of up to 700,000 of Mosul's estimated population of around a million people.
"It is very difficult, it will take a long time, but the operation right now is on track and it's on track because of the brave fighters on the ground, but also because [of] what we've done as a coalition to help them succeed," he said.
McGurk praised the efforts of Turkey to stop militants crossing its border to join the militants. The number of foreign fighters getting into Syria now was "negligible", he said.
Law enforcement, intelligence, military and other experts from the U.S. government met their counterparts from other coalition members for eight hours in Berlin on Wednesday.
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