The conference did not include representatives from Syria Bashar al-Assad or Russian Federation and Iran, which have said they are seeking to defeat the Islamic State group as they shore up his iron-fisted rule.
Trump, fresh from a state of the union speech in which he doubled down on pulling out of "endless wars", was scheduled to speak to the group later in the day - a late change in the schedule that appeared aimed at placating coalition members fearful that a US withdrawal would spark a resurgence in the Islamic State, a group also variously known as ISIS, ISIL and Daesh.
With a litany of criminal investigations looming over his administration and various associates, Trump sought to link the country's strong economic growth of late with what he said was the danger of "ridiculous partisan investigations".
President Donald Trump delivered the State of the Union address, with Vice President Mike Pence and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, at the Capitol in Washington, Feb. 5, 2019. In September, the State Department closed the US Consulate in the southern city of Basra after an Iran-backed group launched a rocket attack against the facility. "A remnant can be very unsafe", Trump said in remarks meant to reassure U.S. allies that America was not abandoning the fight against the terror group. But the troops have yet to start leaving Syria, and officials subsequently have said the military exodus would unfold over several months. Suicide bombers snuck onto the grounds soon after, but were stopped by Iraqi troops.
According to the joint military task force that has been fighting ISIS for more than four years, the group remains "a battle-hardened and well-disciplined force" that is "able to coordinate offensives and counter-offensives", the inspector general reported.
Venezuelan opposition welcomes Canada's call for military backing
Guaido on Twitter expressed his gratitude to the European Union leaders for supporting Venezuela's fight for freedom. The Government, it said, will "completely revise bilateral relations with those countries from now on".
Asked about a recent CNN report detailing how U.S. supplied military equipment provided to Saudi Arabia and the UAE was winding up in the hands of local militias in Yemen, Votel said, "We have not authorized Saudi Arabia or the Emirates to re-transfer any of this equipment to other parties on the ground in Yemen". Pro-Iran Iraqi lawmakers have proposed nominating Falih Fayyad, the leader of the Shiite-dominated Popular Mobilization Units, which Baghdad has struggled to control, for the Interior Ministry post.
In particular, US support to the SDF is "vital" to that group's ongoing fight against some 2,000 ISIS fighters who are still said to be resisting tenaciously in the Middle Euphrates River Valley.
"We stand with the Venezuelan people in their noble quest for freedom-and we condemn the brutality of the Maduro regime, whose socialist policies have turned that nation from being the wealthiest in South America into a state of abject poverty and despair", said Trump.
"One of the reasons I want to keep it is because I want to be looking a little bit at Iran because Iran is a real problem", Trump said, adding that he wouldn't use the United States military outpost to strike Iran, but to "watch" it.
Syrian Democratic Forces and USA troops are seen during a patrol near Turkish border in Hasakah, Syria November 4, 2018. "But if the goal is to have the administration's overall Iran policy be operationalized and effective, it is going to take a lot more than just watching".
"If I had not been elected President of the United States, we would right now, in my opinion, be in a major war with North Korea", Trump said. "I am not under pressure to be out by a specific date", he said. "Great nations do not fight endless wars", Trump told Congress.
"Our slogan is friendly relations with the whole world", he said.