WASHINGTON, Nov. 7 (UPI) -- U.S. President Barack Obama has authorized the deployment of an additional 1,500 troops to Iraq to help advise and train Iraqi forces as they seek to counter the Islamic State, also known as ISIL.
Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel recommended the president authorize the additional forces at the request of the Iraqi government and in consultation with U.S. Central Command's assessments, explained Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby.
The Pentagon underlined that U.S. personnel deployed will serve "in a non-combat role."
U.S. personnel serving in an "advise and assist" capacity will be stationed at two operation centers, one outside of Baghdad and the other in Erbil, and will "provide support for the Iraqis at the brigade headquarters level and above."
U.S. and Coalition trainers will be posted to "several sites across Iraq," in northern, western and south Iraq. The sites will be used to train 12 Iraqi brigades, nine of which are Iraqi Army and three Kurdish Peshmerga. "The training will be funded through the request of an Iraq Train and Equip Fund that the administration will submit to Congress as well as from the Government of Iraq," Kirby noted.
The Pentagon added that the latest deployment authorization "is in keeping with our overarching strategy to work with partners on the ground to destroy ISIL."