More troops to join training mission
MILITARY Canada will deploy more troops to help train local fighters battling Islamic State extremists as part of Canada’s renewed commitment to the anti-terror fight, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says.
Trudeau confirmed Tuesday what he has been hinting at for several days — that a beefedup training mission will mark the core of Canada’s changing contribution to the coalition fight against extremists in Iraq and Syria. But Trudeau also warned the battle against the terrorists will “not be a short engagement.”
The additional troops will come as the Liberal government makes good on its election pledge to end the yearlong combat mission by CF-18 fighter jets bombing extremist targets in Iraq and Syria.
Instead, Canada will announce it will commit more soldiers to the training role to enable local militia to take the fight to the extremists and reclaim territory in Iraq lost to Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) forces.
Talking to reporters, Trudeau said the new military mission is certain to involve more than the 69 Canadian troops already on the ground in northern Iraq, an operation launched more than a year ago to train peshmerga forces. But just how many more, their exact mission and the timing of the deployment are all questions that are being looked at, he said.