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First US military advisers working in Iraq

Iraqi government forces stand guard next to a tank on June 24, 2014 in the western city of RamadiThe first teams of up to 300 US military advisers have begun their mission in Baghdad to assist the Iraqi army in its fight against Sunni extremists, the Pentagon said Tuesday. Admiral John Kirby told reporters that “we have begun to deploy initial assessment teams” and two teams of about 40 troops “have started their new mission.” The first two teams were drawn from the US embassy in Iraq, and an additional 90 troops had arrived to set up a joint operations center in Baghdad, Kirby said. “These teams will assess the cohesiveness and readiness of Iraqi security forces, hire headquarters in Baghdad, and examine the most effective and efficient way to introduce follow-on advisers,” he said.

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