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CF-18s useless without on-the-ground training: Harjit Sajjan

HALIFAX – Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan is suggesting CF-18 fighter jets would make little difference in the war against the Islamic State if Canada doesn’t focus completely on its training mission in Iraq.

Sajjan fielded more questions today at the Halifax International Security Forum about the Liberal government’s plans to withdraw the fighter jets.

READ MORE: ‘You can’t carpet-bomb your way to victory’: Plotting the fight against ISIS

Sajjan was asked if Canada’s allies raised the matter with him during the security forum.

He told reporters that if the training of ground forces in Iraq isn’t done right then it won’t matter where bombs drop.

Sajjan reiterated that Canada is part of a coalition in the fight against ISIL, and other members of the coalition are contributing resources to airstrikes.

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The Liberals promised during the election campaign that Canada would pull out of the combat mission against ISIL, but no clear date has been given on when that will occur.

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