WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senator Joni Ernst (R-IA), a combat veteran and member of the Senate Armed Service Committee, today made the following statement on the Obama Administration and the Association of Southeast Asian Nations' (ASEAN) discussion on ISIS in Asia:

"I am pleased to see Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and his counterparts from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations were able to come together in Hawaii. Working to ensure we can collaborate to counter ISIS in Southeast Asia is important as we see our common enemy spread. Secretary Carter's request for a 2017 workshop on counter terrorism in Southeast Asia to identify critical strategy gaps is a step in the right direction, but ‎we must do more."

Last week, Senator Ernst pressed Secretary Carter and General Dunford on the rise of ISIS in the region. They concurred with the Senator's assessment of the threat and noted this would be a top topic for the ASEAN meeting. 

Ernst added, "I will continue to stress the importance of countering ISIS in Southeast Asia as we strike them in the Middle East to the Obama Administration. We must show American leadership through support of our allies to destroy an enemy wishing to strike our homeland.  ISIS is adapting, it's time the strategy to defeat them does, too. "

Senator Ernst this week raised concerns with Nicholas Rasmussen, the Director of the National Counterterrorism Center; James Comey, Director of the FBI; and Secretary Johnson on the alarming rise of ISIS in Southeast Asia and its impact on our national security. Additionally, the Senator pressed Secretary of Defense Ash Carter and Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff General Joseph Dunford on the need for a strategy to combat ISIS in Asia. Click here to read more.