Iraq says no to US troops but Sec Def sending “trigger pullers” to fight ISIS anyway

Haider al-Abbadi, the Prime Minister of Iraq, said “We do not need foreign ground combat forces on Iraqi land,” in a statement on Tuesday.

“The Iraqi government stresses that any military operation or the deployment of any foreign forces – special or not – in any place in Iraq cannot happen without its approval and coordination and full respect of Iraqi sovereignty.”

Army Col. Steve Warren, Operation Inherent Resolve spokesman, said that the number of special operations soldiers being sent to Iraq will be close to one hundred.  During the press briefing he continued to say that of the hundred or so troops there will be “trigger pullers” but most of them will be support.

According to Reuters, The Iraqi government has been fully briefed on the United States’ plan to deploy special operators to Iraq.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said the two governments will consult closely on where they will go and what they will do.

He elaborated by saying, “We will continue to work very, very closely with our Iraqi partners on exactly who would be deployed, where they would be deployed, what kinds of missions people would undertake, how they would support Iraqi efforts to degrade and destroy ISIL.”

Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi’s office said it welcomed foreign assistance but Iraq’s government would need to approve any deployment of U.S. special operators anywhere in Iraq in a statement on Wednesday.

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