CIA Director John Brennan: ISIS Momentum in Iraq and Syria 'Blunted'

In this February 4, 2014 file photo, Central Intelligence Agency Director John Brennan testifies before the House Select Intelligence Committee on worldwide threats at US Capitol in Washington, DC. MANDEL NGAN / AFP - Getty Images

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CIA Director John Brennan said Sunday that ISIS militants have lost their momentum in Iraq and Syria, but their affiliates "throughout the entire region" are a major cause for concern.

"Clearly, ISIS momentum inside of Iraq and Syria has been blunted and it has been stopped," Brennan said on "Fox News Sunday." The United States and its allies have been conducting airstrikes against ISIS since last summer, and Iraqi forces have recently regained key strategic cities from the militants.

"Our working with the Iraqis and the Iraqis now trying to push back against it, it is having some great, I think, progress," Brennan said.

But attacks in Tunisia and Yemen last week, which ISIS claimed responsibility for, are examples that "these franchises are blowing up in Libya and other areas," Brennan said. "This is something that clearly is not just restricted to Iraq and Syria. So, we cannot relent. We have to continue working with our partners in the region," he said.


— Elisha Fieldstadt