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Baghdad evening updates: 4k US troops to deploy, and more

By | Rachel Brooks

Contributor | Telegraph Local 

See the New African Living Standard 

The chaos in Baghdad continues to escalate. Citing Fox News, the US is expected to launch 4,000 more troops into Iraq. The US Army’s 82nd Airborne Division’s alert brigade has been ordered to deploy rapidly to Kuwait. There are 500 fresh paratroopers making their way to Kuwait. 

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The alert brigade is called DRB_Deployment Ready Brigade. They have been ordered to pack their go-bags. This follows an attack by “hundreds” of Irani-backed Hezbollah militia on December 31, 2019. The entire DRB unit is given a 96-hour deployment window to respond to high-alert threats on the United States. The attack on the US Embassy of Baghdad is one of these. 

The Pentagon is expected to release a statement concerning this deployment in the next few hours. Some of the paratroopers have left their base in Fort Bragg, NC. They will fly overseas in Air Force C-17 cargo planes. The US Army keeps 4,000 paratroopers in the case of emergency events such as this. 

 

Washington Post reports that all US Embassy staffers and the diplomat are safe. US Ambassador Matt Tueller was “away traveling” on the day of the Tuesday attack. The rest of the personnel are safe_with no reported plans to evacuate the embassy. This would be a development from earlier reports that the embassy and the diplomat had been evacuated. The Telegraph Local is working to confirm that this is the most accurate representation of the events as they happened. 

The Philadelphia Inquirer states that despite President Trumps’ desire to disengage from “endless wars” in the Middle East, this seems no longer possible. The Philadelphia Inquirer also states that US allies of the Middle East, Israel and Saudi Arabia, are urging a more forceful confrontation with Tehran. 

Citing Haaretz, as President Trump puts the culpability of the Hezbollah militia attacks on Iran, Iran publicly stated the following:

“American officials have an astounding audacity of attributing to Iran the protests of the Iraqi people against (Washington’s) savage killing of 25 Iraqis.” Stated Iranian Foreign Ministry spokesman Abbas Mousavi.  

EurasiaReview states that the US ambassador and other staff evacuated from the Embassy, citing Iraqi officials. This would contradict the report made by Washington Post. 

EurasiaReview spoke to “two Iraqi foreign ministry officials” who did not say when the ambassador or the staffers had left. Some of the staff were said to remain. There is a small contradiction between the older reports and the more recent reports. Reuters, within the last hour, reported that the State Department says the diplomatic personnel inside were safe. They also stated that “there were no plans to evacuate them.” 

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Reuters’ more recent report also states that the security guards managed to repel the mob with tear gas and stun grenades. The protestors did not breach the main compound. 

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told CBS News that the US officials never contemplated evacuating the embassy and had kept the heat on Iraqi officials to ensure the compound was safe. 

This is a developing story. Telegraph Local is continuing to work to ensure that the inconsistencies across media handles are sorted out. Continue checking back for more. 

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