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Hitting the Brakes? Obama downplays prospect of imminent strikes in Syria

President Obama on Thursday downplayed the prospect of any imminent U.S. airstrikes in Syria, saying "we don't have a strategy yet" and stressing that military advisers are still reviewing options for confronting Islamic State militants.

At the same time, the president bluntly ruled out U.S. military action for dealing with another international crisis -- mounting evidence of Russian incursions into eastern Ukraine. "We are not taking military action to solve the Ukrainian problem," Obama said.

The president addressed both crises during remarks in the White House briefing room late Thursday afternoon, as Congress prepares to return from the summer recess. In recent days, lawmakers on both sides of the aisle have demanded that the U.S. strategy for targeting the Islamic State be put to a vote on Capitol Hill, amid speculation the military campaign might expand into Syria.

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