US Delta Force to begin operations in Iraq
Iran Press TV
Mon Feb 29, 2016 5:32PM
The US Army's elite Delta Force units are preparing for operations to target, detain or kill the main Daesh (ISIL) operators in Iraq, says a US official.
The official told CNN on Monday that the troops have been preparing over the last few weeks, setting up safe houses and establishing informant networks while coordinating their missions with Iraqi and Kurdish Peshmerga forces.
This is similar to the strategy US special operation forces have been using during previous deployments to similar combat zones, including the northern parts of Syria.
The report could not verify where or when the operations were going to take place but it noted that the strategy worked in May 2015 when the forces raided a building in Syria, allegedly killing major Daesh operator Abu Sayyaf and capturing his wife.
US military officials declined to comment on the matter or discuss any details of the operations.
'We will not comment on their operations or their location to maintain operational security,' Pentagon Press Secretary Peter Cook said.
Devices and documents gathered from the building, along with confessions from Sayyaf's wife gave a detailed insight into the terror group's network, laying the basis for other missions, US commanders claim.
In December of last year, US Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter initially detailed such missions at a congressional testimony, saying the Pentagon was sending a 'specialized expeditionary targeting force (ETF)' to conduct 'raids and intelligence gathering missions.'
The Pentagon's ETF, comprised of 200 personnel deployed to Iraq last December, have gathered enough intelligence to conduct missions against about half a dozen "targeted missions" inside Iraq and to go after certain leaders of the group.
As part of its so-called war on Daesh Takfiri terrorists, the Pentagon had announced there were 3,500 US forces on the ground in Iraq to 'train and equip' local security forces against the foreign-backed militants.
That tally has now been increased to 3,870, according to US Army Colonel Steve Warren.
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