the republic logo

On Obama's order, 350 more troops assigned to protect US Embassy in Baghdad in noncombat role

bug
Share/Save/Bookmark

WASHINGTON — The U.S. is adding 350 more troops to help protect the American Embassy in Baghdad and its support facilities in the capital, raising the number of U.S. forces in the country to over 1,000, officials said Tuesday.

President Barack Obama approved the additional troops for protection of American personnel following a request by the State Department and a review and recommendation by the Defense Department, the White House said in a statement.

The buildup of U.S. troops in Baghdad follows the growing threat from Islamic State militants in northern Iraq. Since early August the U.S. has carried out 124 airstrikes against the militants, the latest taking place near Mosul Dam on Monday.

PHOTO: President Barack Obama waves as he boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2014, as he begins his trip to Estonia and Wales for the NATO Summit. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)
President Barack Obama waves as he boards Air Force One at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Tuesday, Sept. 2, 2014, as he begins his trip to Estonia and Wales for the NATO Summit. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

The additional troops will not serve in a combat role, the White House said. Most are from the Army and some are Marines, the Pentagon said in a statement.

Approximately 820 troops have now been assigned to augment diplomatic security in Iraq, said Rear Adm. John Kirby, the Pentagon's spokesman.

The additional troops will come from within the U.S. Central Command area of operations and will include a headquarters element, medical personnel, associated helicopters and an air liaison team, Kirby said. Fifty-five troops in Baghdad since June will be redeployed outside of Iraq and replaced by 405 newly deployed troops, he said.

The airstrike Monday near Mosul Dam involved fighters and attack aircraft that damaged or destroyed 16 armed vehicles, Central Command said in a statement late Tuesday.

Think your friends should see this? Share it with them!

Story copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Feedback, Corrections and Other Requests: AP welcomes feedback and comments from readers. Send an email to info@ap.org and it will be forwarded to the appropriate editor or reporter.


We also have more stories about:
(click the phrases to see a list)

Category:

Follow The Republic:

All content copyright ©2014 The Republic, a division of Home News Enterprises unless otherwise noted.
All rights reserved. Privacy policy.