British troops will be deployed to northern Iraq to support the US-led international coalition battling Islamic State, Prime Minister David Cameron has said.
The British government has confirmed it will provide up to 1,000 soldiers to the Iraqi Security Forces (ISF) and the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).
“British soldiers are now being deployed to Iraq to help our allies fight ISIL and to secure the UK’s border with Syria,” the Prime Minister’s spokesman said in a statement.
Cameron said the move is intended to help secure the border and secure the country against attacks by Islamic State.
“Britain is providing this force to our allies to help them fight ISIL,” he said.
The British Army is not only sending troops to Iraq but also the Royal Australian Air Force to help with security at the UK-Australia border.
A total of 2,500 troops are currently on the ground in the region, including 2,000 British servicemen.
Earlier this month, Cameron said the UK is planning to send troops to Syria, where he said he would “help” to “liberate” the country.
British officials said on Monday they were not planning to leave Iraq, but that Cameron has ordered troops to the region.
ISIL, which is backed by a US-backed coalition, seized much of Iraq and Syria in 2014.
Islamic State is trying to carve out an Islamic caliphate in parts of Iraq, Syria and Libya, which have been under their control since 2014.