World Bulletin/News Desk
President Barack Obama on Friday authorized the U.S. military to deploy up to 1,500 additional troops to help train and advise Iraqi and Kurdish forces fighting ISIL militants, the White House said.
The White House will ask Congress for $5.6 billion for the operations in Iraq and Syria, which includes $1.6 billion for the new "Iraq Train and Equip Fund," the White House Office of Management and Budget said.
The troops will not assume a combat role, according to Pentagon presssecretary John Kirby. He added that U.S. Central Command, or Centcom, will establish two operations centers outside of those currently in Baghdad and Erbil that will be “supported by an appropriate array of force protection capabilities.”
While not pinpointing the exact locations for the new sites, Kirby said that they would be based in northern, western and southern Iraq.
“Coalition partners will join U.S. personnel at these locations to help build Iraqi capacity and capability,” Kirby said in a statement. "Ultimately, these Iraqi forces, when fully trained, will enable Iraq to better defend its citizens, its borders, and its interests against the threat of ISIL."
Funding for the training operation will come jointly from a request that the administration will submit to Congress, and from the Iraqi government.
The move follows a recommendation made by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel to President Barack Obama based on an Iraqi government request, Centcom's assessment of Iraqi units, "and in concert with the development of a coalition campaign plan to defend key areas and go on the offensive against the ISIL."Last Mod: 07 Kasım 2014, 22:39