Trudeau vows to be 'strong' partner in ISIS fight

Despite pulling fighter jets from Iraq and Syria, Justin Trudeau tells President Obama Canada to remain 'strong member' of US coalition.

Arutz Sheva Staff ,

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

Canada's Prime Minister Justin Trudeau vowed on Thursday to remain a "strong" partner in the international fight against the Islamic State terror group, while indicating he would make no u-turn on pulling fighter jets out of Iraq and Syria.

"Canada will and must remain a strong member of the coalition," Trudeau said after a meeting with US President Barack Obama on the sidelines of a trade summit in Manila.

In line with a campaign pledge, the newly elected Trudeau has vowed to bring home Canadian warplanes deployed in Iraq and Syria, without setting a specific timeframe.

Instead Canada has said it will ramp up its commitment to training forces fighting the violent jihadist group, leaving an even greater proportion of the air campaign to the United States and other allies.

Canada last year deployed 69 military trainers to northern Iraq to train Kurdish militia, as well as six CF-18 fighter jets that have conducted 1,121 sorties in Iraq and Syria as of November 15.

Parliament in March voted to extend the mission one year, but Trudeau has vowed to cut it short.

At the same time Trudeau has vowed to press ahead with plans to bring 25,000 Syrian refugees to Canada by year's end, despite growing opposition over security concerns following last week's deadly ISIS-claimed Paris attacks.

Trudeau had pledged during the recent election campaign to resettle refugees now living in camps in Jordan, Lebanon and Turkey by January 1.

Since taking office he has mobilized several government ministries to meet the goal in such a short time.

AFP contributed to this report.