Defense Secretary James Mattis has said the Defense Department will modify how it conducts operations to defeat the Islamic State militant group in 2018, DoD News reported Friday.
Mattis told reporters Friday that coalition forces will work to hunt down the remaining members of the militant group and work with the Iraqi government to equip troops and police who will help locate and eliminate potential threats to the country.
He added U.S. troops will also shift from a terrain-seizing approach in Iraq and Syria to stabilization efforts such as establishment of water and electrical systems, reopening of schools and sweeping of improvised explosive devices, he added.
Communications between coalition forces and Russia have continued to aid operations in the region and coalition forces work to disrupt the terror group’s physical caliphate, according to Mattis.
The defense secretary also noted that the destruction of the physical caliphate will help diminish the potential recruitment of more people who plan to support the terror group as well as minimize the appeal of life under the organization’s rule.