BAGHDAD, March 9 (UPI) -- U.S. Gen. Martin Dempsey, on his way to Iraq, said the work of 2,500 U.S. military advisers was being slowed by unprepared and unavailable Iraqi troops.
The Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff spoke while aboard the French aircraft carrier Charles de Gaulle, as he traveled to Baghdad, where this week he will meet with Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi. The foremost topic on the agenda is a discussion on how the Shiite-led government will keep Iraq from falling into sectarian conflict after a military operation to remove Islamic State militants from the city of Tikrit. "Right now we don't need more advisers on the ground. We've got trainers and advisers that are waiting for some of the Iraqi units to show up, and when they've shown up, a handful of them, they've shown up understrength and sometimes without the proper equipment. The Iraqi government can actually fix that themselves," Dempsey said.