October 17, 2019 / 10:39 PM / 2 months ago

Trump defends Middle East policy, says Islamic State is under control

U.S. President Donald Trump visits the Louis Vuitton Rochambeau Ranch leather workshop in Keene, Texas, U.S. October 17, 2019. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst

ALVARADO, Texas (Reuters) - U.S. President Donald Trump on Thursday defended his Middle East policy, as he comes under bipartisan criticism over his administration’s move to withdraw U.S. troops from northeast Syria and an agreement for a 120-hour pause to a Turkish incursion of the area.

“ISIS is totally under control and we’re continuing to capture more,” Trump said, using an acronym for Islamic State. He spoke at a ribbon-cutting ceremony for a factory in Texas.

(The story corrects to change headline to say Trump defends Middle East policy, not Turkey)

Reporting by Steve Holland; Writing by Makini Brice; Editing by Eric Beech

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