US partnership with Turkey in Islamic State fight ‘very strong’


 

A US Air Force Boeing KC-135R Stratotanker aerial refueling aircraft lands at Incirlik air base in Adana, Turkey, August 10, 2015. REUTERS / Murad Sezer

WASHINGTON The US partnership with Turkey in countering Islamic State is “very strong,” US Defense Secretary Ash Carter said at a news conference on Thursday.

“With respect to Turkey, our partnership is very strong in the counter-ISIL campaign,” Carter said, using an acronym for Islamic State.

Carter made the comments after Turkish air strikes pounded a group of Kurdish fighters allied to a US-backed militia in northern Syria overnight, highlighting the conflicting agendas of NATO members Ankara and Washington in an increasingly complex battlefield.

(Reporting by Yeganeh Torbati)

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