More troops to join train­ing mis­sion

Metro Canada (Winnipeg) - - METRO NEWS - ToRSTaR NeWS SeR­VICe

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.

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