Obama's policy on Syria and Islamic State working, claims Democratic vice presidential nominee

Washington: The Syria and Islamic State policy of President Barack Obama is working as the terrorist outfit is shrinking in its occupied space, Democratic vice presidential nominee Senator Tim Kaine said on Monday.

Tim Kaine says ISIS is shrinking in its occupied space. Reuters

Tim Kaine says Islamic State is shrinking in its occupied space. Reuters

"We have dramatically improved in the last year. And the proof is in how much ground ISIS has lost," Kaine, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, told CNN.

A year ago, Kaine was highly critical of Obama's Syria policy and described it as a joke. It's no longer the case, he said.

"A year ago, I think you remember, we had a small force that we were trying to put into Syria. And the opening of that was a dismal failure. But now we're taking the fight to ISIS to defeat and destroy them," he told CNN.

"If you look at what's happened in the last year, ISIS' territory has dramatically shrunk because of a significant uptick in cooperation between the US, the Iraqi military, the Kurdish fighters in Northern Iraq, the Kurds in Northern Syria and the Syrian opposition," Kaine said.

Russia can demand that Syria stop its atrocities against its civilians. Russia has always had the ability to mandate a ceasefire, because they're there in Syria. They're Syria's chief backer, he said.

At the same time, he hoped that Moscow will stick to the table, stick to the ceasefire agreement, because that's what's necessary to solve this humanitarian crisis.

Responding to questions, Kaine acknowledged that situation has deteriorated in Iraq.

"In Iraq, it spiraled downward. And then, in Syria, where we didn't have troops, it spiraled downward because of the atrocities of Bashar al-Assad. We can't make governments govern wisely," he said.

"But what we need to do is, when terrorists pose a threat to allies or to the United States, we need to engage in punishing activity to destroy them. We are now on track to defeat ISIS on the battlefield. But we have got to be sharing intelligence with our allies, so that we can keep America and our allies safe," Kaine said.

Updated Date: Sep 19, 2016 09:56 AM

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