WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — US and allied forces should stay in Iraq after Daesh terrorists are defeated, US Defense Secretary Ashton Carter said at the Reagan National Defense Forum in California.
"To make sure that once defeated ISIL [Daesh] stays defeated we need to continue to counter foreign fighters trying to escape and ISIL’s attempts to relocate or reinvent itself. To do so, not only the US but the coalition must endure and remain militarily engaged," Carter said Saturday.
"In Iraq in particular, it will be necessary for the coalition to provide sustained assistance and carry on our work to train, equip and support local police, border guards and other forces to hold areas cleared of ISIL," he continued.
In the Daesh stronghold of Mosul in northern Iraq, local security forces have isolated the city with the help of the coalition’s airstrikes, he said, and are taking back eastern districts on their way westward.