With the assistance of U.S. and partner-nation airstrikes, Iraqi security forces, including Kurdish forces, have curtailed the advance of ISIL in Iraq and have reclaimed some territory threatened or captured by the terrorist group. But forces in Iraq fighting ISIL need more and urgent help to defeat it.
President Barack Obama has authorized an additional 1500 U.S. military advisers to be sent to Iraq to bolster Iraqi capacity and capability. And the Pentagon has requested that the U.S. Congress approve an additional 1.6 billion dollar package of security assistance to Iraqi security forces, as part of President Obama’s 5.6 billion dollar overseas contingency operations fund to degrade and defeat ISIL.
In briefing reporters, State Department Press Office Director Jeff Rathke said the U.S. “is committed to helping the Iraqi security forces, including the Kurdish security forces, achieve victory over ISIL:”
“We have enormous respect for the courage that the Kurds have shown and the fight that they’ve already taken to ISIL. And that’s why, in coordination with the Government of Iraq, the United States and the coalition have been very supportive of Iraqi Kurdish forces.”
“Since the crisis began, the United States and members of the coalition have worked with the Iraqi central government to send 46 plane loads of needed equipment to the Kurdish Regional Government,” Mr. Rathke said, “and we continue our support.”