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Statement | April 2, 2020

U.S. Central Command Statement on the movement of air defense systems into Iraq

U.S. Central Command Public Affairs

"As the Commander, U.S. Central Command, Gen. Frank McKenzie said at a press briefing on March 13, the U.S. is moving defensive systems into Iraq to protect Iraqi, coalition, and U.S. service members from a variety of air threats seen at Iraqi bases that host coalition troops. It is important to note that repeated attacks on Iraqi bases, which violate Iraqi sovereignty, have killed and injured Iraqi, coalition, and U.S. service members.

The establishment of ground-based air defenses in Iraq continues, but for operational security reasons, we are not providing status updates as those systems come online. The Iraqi Government is well aware of our collective need for air defense protection of service members within Iraq, and we continue to coordinate closely with our Iraqi counterparts. The U.S. and our Coalition partners remain committed to the lasting defeat of ISIS and supporting Iraq's long-term security and stability."

-Captain Bill Urban, USN, U.S. Central Command Spokesman