ANKARA, Turkey – Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel says Turkey has limits to what it will do in the fight against Islamic State militants in Iraq, but the country will play a role in the regional campaign being developed.
Hagel met with top Turkish leaders Monday and says they are still assessing what their role will be. He would not provide details.
Turkey has been reluctant to wade into any military intervention against Islamic State militants, sensitive to the fact that they are holding 49 Turkish citizens hostage. Turkey is concerned about an insurgent backlash against the hostages if it takes a more overt role in the fight.
President Barak Obama on Wednesday will outline plans for an expanded campaign against the militants. That strategy depends on participation by regional partners such as Turkey.