Obama: Very Important Not To Withdraw From Iraq

Oman's Deputy Prime Minister Fahd bin Mahmoud al-Said, President Barack Obama Saudi Arabia's King Salman, Bahrain's King Hamad bin Isa al Khalifa participate in the Leaders Photo at the Diriyah Palace during the Gulf Cooperation Council Summit in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Thursday, April 21, 2016.
AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster

President Barack Obama says that it’s still important for the United States to stay involved in Iraq, as the nation struggles to fight radical Islamic terrorism.

During a press conference in Saudi Arabia, Obama acknowledged that Prime Minister Abadi is delivering some results in the ongoing fight against Islamic State terrorists in Iraq even though there were problems with the stability of the government.

“That’s a reason for us not to withdraw, but rather to get more involved in helping to stabilize areas like Anbar, where we’ve not cleared out ISIL but the towns that they were governing have been left devastated,” Obama said. The president made his remarks at the end of the GCC Summit.

He discussed the importance of rebuilding cities and communities that had been stricken .by ISIS urged all countries in the region to respond with assistance.

“If we want Sunni communities to be able to rebuild themselves and to get back into the lives they were leading before ISIL took over, then we’re going to have to help the Iraqi government respond,” he said.

But Obama did express some hesitation about the future of Prime Minister Abadi’s ability to bring Iraq together, citing “dissension and dispute” among the different political factions in the country.

“Now is not the time for government gridlock or bickering,” he said in a message to Iraqi politicians.