U.S. commander downplays chance of big Iraq, Syria troop hike


 Reuters International

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The top U.S. commander in Iraq on Wednesday downplayed the chances that the United States would deploy a large number of additional coalition forces to battle the Islamic State, even as President Donald Trump weighs options to speed the campaign.

"I don't foresee us bringing in large numbers of coalition troops, mainly because what we're doing is, in fact, working," Army Lieutenant General Stephen Townsend told a Pentagon news briefing, speaking via video conference from Baghdad.

"But in that event that we bring in any additional troops, we'll work that with our local partners, both here in Iraq and Syria, to make sure that they understand the reasons why we're doing that and to get their buy-in of that."

(Reporting by Phil Stewart and Idrees Ali; Editing by James Dalgleish)

Reuters

 Reuters International