US formally asks Australia to expand fight against Islamic State attack in Syria

THE United State has formally asked Australia to expand its role in the fight against the Islamic State in Syria.

The formal request for increased involvement, including the potential for Australian airstrikes, was reportedly sent to the Australian embassy in Washington DC on Thursday.

It comes after Liberal MP Dan Tehan, the head of parliament’s intelligence and security committee, last week called on Australia to expand its operations in Iraq to Syria.


Cabinet Minister Christopher Pyne says no decision has been made on whether Australia will accept the request.

“I don’t believe any decision has been made by the government and obviously we would be briefing the opposition,” he told the Nine Network, adding a briefing was scheduled for early next week about “any developments that might occur there”.