U.S. pledges 200 mln Dollars to support anti-IS efforts in Syria

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U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said on Monday the United States supports Egypt's fight against Islamic State but reiterated that it advocated free and fair elections in the Arab country.

The Trump administration, concerned that the coalition it cobbled together to destroy the Islamic State group is losing sight of the prime objective, pressed its partners on Tuesday to refocus their efforts.

Turkey launched a military incursion into Kurdish enclaves in northern Syria last month, drawing criticism from the USA and prompting concerns of a potential confrontation between Turkish and American forces in the region. She said it "mischaracterized the conference as a pledging conference", and it was not intended as such.

US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson (left) and Egyptian Foreign Minister, Sameh Shoukry hold a press conference after their meeting, at Tahrir Palace, in Cairo, Egypt yesterday. "But they're also partners with whom we're facing some of the toughest issues that we have to face in the region".

Meanwhile, Tillerson said that the United States is keen on reinforcing the bilateral security and political relations with Egypt in the upcoming years.

Tillerson met with el-Sissi at the al Ittihadiya Presidential palace before heading to the airport and continuing his tour, with stops in Kuwait, Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey.

Man arrested after shooting near National Security Agency
USA Today notes that drivers occasionally take the wrong exit and end up at the tightly guarded NSA gates. The FBI's Baltimore office said it had sent agents to the scene and that the incident had been contained.

The war against Daesh must remain the priority even though major combat operations are over, Tillerson said.

"We will continue to be completely transparent with Turkey about our efforts in Syria to defeat ISIS, and we stand by our North Atlantic Treaty Organisation ally in its counterterrorism efforts", he went on to say.

After Cairo, Tillerson jetted in to Kuwait to take part in a ministerial meeting of the US-led military coalition that has been battling the Islamic State group in Iraq and neighbouring Syria.

In Jordan, Tillerson will be doing damage control after Trump's recognition of Jerusalem as Israel's capital and his administration's subsequent decision to withhold aid money from the United Nations agency assisting Palestinian refugees. Iran and its proxies in Syria have clashed with Israel.

The plan is being crafted by a team led by Jared Kushner, Trump's son-in-law and senior adviser, and U.S. Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt, both of whom have travelled to key regional capitals since the Trump administration came to office. A USA strike last week reportedly killed private Russian military contractors fighting in the country, though the reports couldn't be immediately verified.

"They know what has to be on the table for conversations".

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