Canada signs “mil­i­tary pro­to­col” with KRG

The Kurdish Globe - - NEWS -

Canada has agreed to pro­vide Kur­dish Pesh­merga Forces with robots to defuse bombs and land­mines, Kur­dis­tan Re­gional Gov­ern­ment Pesh­merga Min­istry of­fi­cials an­nounced.

The Pesh­merga Min­is­ter Mustafa Sayid Qadir and Jabar Yawar, Sec­re­tary Gen­eral of Pesh­merga Min­istry, said they had met with Cana­dian Am­bas­sador to Iraq Bruno Sac­co­mani in Er­bil.

The Pesh­merga Min­istry said it had signed a "mil­i­tary pro­to­col" with the Cana­dian gov­ern­ment. "Ac­cord­ing to the pro­to­col, phase 1 will in­clude a va­ri­ety of mil­i­tary equip­ment for Pesh­merga; the most im­por­tant are the de-min­ing robots that can be used for find­ing and de­fus­ing mines and bombs."

Ear­lier this month, Canada an­nounced an agree­ment to pro­vide $10 mil­lion worth of non-lethal mil­i­tary equip­ment to Kur­dish au­thor­i­ties. "This equip­ment in­cludes ex­plo­sives de­tec­tion and dis­posal equip­ment," Adam Hodge, a spokesman for For­eign Af­fairs Min­is­ter John Baird said Thurs­day.

"Our goal is to ad­vise and as­sist Iraqi se­cu­rity forces as they at­tempt to pro­tect their cit­i­zens from IS and pre­vent fur­ther es­ca­la­tion of the hu­man­i­tar­ian cri­sis."

The Cana­dian mil­i­tary is not in­volved in pur­chas­ing the robots or pro­vid­ing train­ing for the de­vices. That will be han­dled by a Cana­dian "part­ner" in the re­gion, said a gov­ern­ment source who did not pro­vide de­tails.

The Cana­dian mil­i­tary has al­ready trans­ported am­mu­ni­tion, weapons and other equip­ment to Kur­dish forces that are fight­ing the Is­lamic State. The Cana­dian

Prime Min­is­ter Stephen Harper said that 69 Cana­dian spe­cial-force sol­diers will be sent to Iraq to help in the bat­tle. A small num­ber of those Cana­dian ad­vis­ers are al­ready on the ground but it is not known when the rest are to ar­rive in Kur­dis­tan.

Harper said "U.S. Pres­i­dent Barack Obama re­quested the Cana­dian troops."

Canada has com­mit­ted $28 mil­lion in hu­man­i­tar­ian as­sis­tance to Iraq this year. Another $5 mil­lion will be spent to limit the flow of for­eign fight­ers into Iraq and Syria.

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