- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 28, 2016

Almost one year after the international nuclear deal was announced last July, Brett McGurk, President Obama’s special envoy in the fight against the Islamic State, said Tuesday there has been no “significant” change in Iran’s behavior in Syria under the international nuclear deal.

Mr. McGurk said Tehran remains a strong political and military supporter of Syrian President Bashar Assad, whom U.S. officials insist must step down as part of any final settlement of the country’s bloody 5-year-old civil war.

“I have not seen a significant change in Iranian behavior. They are fighting [the Islamic State] from time to time, but they’re primarily working to prop up the Assad regime,” Mr. McGurk told a Senate Foreign Relations Committee hearing on the status of the fight against the jihadi group that controls large parts of both Iraq and Syria.

Mr. McGurk said the Islamic Republic is supporting some Shiite militia groups in Iraq that are operating outside of the central government’s legal authority— an act that is “threatening Iraq’s own sovereignty.”


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