Spanish parliament to consider sending more military to Iraq

Reuters News
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Posted: Dec 09, 2016 9:38 AM

MADRID (Reuters) - Spain's parliament will decide whether to send an extra 125 soldiers to assist in the fight against Islamic State in Iraq, where they have provided training to local troops, the Defense Ministry said on Friday.

The additional troops would put the total number of Spanish forces in Iraq at 425, and would lend further logistical support in bomb detection. Spanish troops would not be taking part in any ground operations.

Spain's parliament agreed unanimously to send 300 military personnel in 2014, when Prime Minister Mariano Rajoy's conservative People's Party (PP) had a majority in parliament.

He is now at the helm of a minority government, meaning he will need support from opposition lawmakers in a highly fragmented lower house, though the second-place Socialist party voted in favor of sending troops two years ago.

It was not immediately clear when parliament would vote on the matter.

(Reporting by Amanda Calvo, Editing by Sarah White and Richard Lough)