President Donald Trump has asked the CIA to work closely with Russia in its fight against the Islamic State group, saying the intelligence agency should be given a chance to “compartmentalize” its efforts against the terror group.
“Russia is the number one adversary of the United States and that is why we need to work very closely with them,” Mr. Trump told reporters on Friday.
“And we need them to compartmentalize, to be able to work as much as they can with us and also take into account their own capabilities and their own limitations.
And I think we should give them a chance.
I’m not sure it would be as effective as we might have hoped, but we have to give them that chance.”
He added: “I have a great relationship with the CIA.
I have a tremendous relationship with them, but I also have a very high level of confidence that when we work together, we can do very, very, good work.”
Mr. Trump’s comments come after the White House issued a new policy Friday barring agencies from working with foreign governments in order to thwart terrorism.
In a series of tweets Friday, the president said the policy was meant to help prevent the spread of foreign terrorist fighters and “to protect the nation from the dangerous threat of terrorism.”
Mr Trump said he did not want to see the United Nations become a “safe haven” for foreign terrorists.
“The United States has a responsibility to work around the world to keep the nations of the world safe,” Mr Trump said.
“Our countries have always worked closely together and we will continue to do so.”
“The safety of our citizens, and the security of our allies, is always a top priority,” he added.