Trump suggests India should fight Islamic State in Afghanistan

Says Pakistan fighting it ‘very, very little’

Updated - November 28, 2021 10:18 am IST

Published - August 22, 2019 10:50 pm IST - Washington

US President Donald Trump.

US President Donald Trump.

U.S. President Donald Trump named India as one of the countries that ought to be fighting the Islamic State (IS) in Afghanistan. He also appeared to suggest that Russia, Iran, Turkey, Afghanistan and Pakistan were countries that should be fighting the IS in Afghanistan.

“Look, India is right there. They’re not fighting it; we’re fighting it. Pakistan is right next door. They're fighting it very little — very, very little. It’s not fair,” Mr. Trump said in the White House. He was responding to a question whether he was concerned about the potential re-emergence of the IS in Afghanistan and how that might impact his plans to withdraw troops from Afghanistan.

On Tuesday Mr. Trump had said the U.S. would not completely withdraw from Afghanistan but “always have intelligence [in Afghanistan] ” and “always have somebody there”.


“The United States — we’re 7,000 miles away. We have decimated ISIS. You haven’t been hearing much about ISIS. And we took the caliphate, 100 percent. When I took it at 98 [per cent], I said, ‘All right, maybe we go home now. Let these other countries handle it.’ Everyone went crazy. They said, ‘Do 100 per cent.’ They said it was going to take a year. It took me a month and they're gone. The caliphate is gone,” Mr. Trump said. 

The U.S. is currently negotiating an agreement with the Taliban to end the war in Afghanistan. The process has been criticised for side-lining the Afghan government and prioritising the withdrawal of some 14,000 U.S. troops over building a peace that can withstand the complex political realities of the situation. 

The Afghan peace process is expected to feature in the discussions Mr. Trump will have with Prime Minister Modi at the G-7 talks this weekend in Biarritz, France. 

The President also said “Europe” would have to take the “thousands” of IS fighters the U.S. was holding. Failing which, Mr. Trump said, the U.S. would release them back to their countries [he named Germany and France]. “The United States is not going to put them in Guantanamo for the next 50 years and pay for it,” Mr. Trump said. 

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