STOCK MARKET BSE NSE

Obama Poised to Send More Troops to Train Iraqis

President Barack Obama appears poised to approve the deployment of hundreds more US training personnel to Iraq, in a bid to reverse gains by the Islamic State group.

Published: 10th June 2015 02:35 PM  |   Last Updated: 10th June 2015 02:35 PM   |  A+A-

By PTI

WASHINGTON: President Barack Obama appears poised to approve the deployment of hundreds more US training personnel to Iraq, in a bid to reverse gains by the Islamic State group.

Officials said Obama is considering authorizing an increase of under 500 troops to boost the capacity of the Iraqi army and Sunni tribal fighters.

"We are considering a range of options to accelerate the training and equipping of Iraqi security forces," National Security Council spokesman Alistair Baskey told AFP.

"Those options include sending additional trainers to Iraq."

Recent Islamic State victories in Ramadi in Iraq and Syria's Palmyra have thrown into doubt Obama's strategy of depending on US airpower and Iraqi ground forces to win the war.

But in response, the Pentagon has drawn up plans to augment an existing mission rather than forge a new approach.

"We've determined it is better to train more Iraqi security forces," Pentagon spokesman Colonel Steven Warren said.

"Because the forces we've trained are performing better than expected, we feel it's in everyone's interest to train more."

The current US mission comprises roughly 3,000 advisers and trainers.

A larger deployment could mean increasing the number of training sites from the four currently being used, one official said.

The training effort would carry "a particular emphasis on the Sunnis," the official added.

Until now, Baghdad has overseen the training of Sunni tribal fighters, who are likely to be key to victory in Ramadi and the surrounding Anbar province.

Now, the Obama administration is looking at American troops directly training those Sunni volunteers.

Weapons deliveries, however, would continue to flow through the Iraqi central government.

Iraq's Sunni Muslim community has yet to join the fight against the self-proclaimed Islamic State in large numbers.

Among Sunnis there is lingering distrust of the Shiite-led government in Baghdad, which IS fighters have sought to exploit.



Comments

Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

edexworks
flipboard facebook twitter whatsapp