Pentagon

Carter says battle against Islamic State militants is 'not a fight with Muslims or Islam'

  • Defense Secretary Ash Carter listens at left as Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar speaks during their joint news conference Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, at the Pentagon. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

    Defense Secretary Ash Carter listens at left as Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar speaks during their joint news conference Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, at the Pentagon. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)  (The Associated Press)

  • Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar gestures while answering a reporters question during a joint news conference with Defense Secretary Ash Carter,  Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, at the Pentagon. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

    Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar gestures while answering a reporters question during a joint news conference with Defense Secretary Ash Carter, Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, at the Pentagon. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)  (The Associated Press)

  • Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar and Defense Secretary Ash Carter listen during their joint news conference, Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, at the Pentagon. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)

    Indian Defense Minister Manohar Parrikar and Defense Secretary Ash Carter listen during their joint news conference, Thursday, Dec. 10, 2015, at the Pentagon. (AP Photo/Cliff Owen)  (The Associated Press)

Defense Secretary Ash Carter and his Indian counterpart are steering clear of directly criticizing Donald Trump's call for a temporary ban on Muslims entering the United States.

But Carter and India's Manohar Parrikar say the anti-Islamic State battle is aimed at violent extremists, not people of the Muslim faith.

Carter was sked at a Pentagon news conference Thursday about Trump's proposal, and the defense secretary said he doesn't comment on domestic politics.

He also said the battle against the Islamic State group is "not a fight with Muslims or Islam." He said it's a fight against an "extremist, violent movement which threatens America."

Parrikar said the question had the potential to be a "nuclear bomb" for him. He then went on to say India doesn't discriminate against any religious group.