NATO Allies have agreed on a defense capacity building package for Iraq, which according to NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg will help strengthen the country’s security and defense sector by providing support in areas where NATO is best-placed to add value.
“This decision, taken today by the North Atlantic Council, underscores NATO’s commitment to deepening our partnership with Iraq,” Stoltenberg said.
The program has been developed upon Iraq’s request and in close consultation with the Iraqi authorities.
According to Stoltenberg, the package includes measures of support in seven priority areas: advice on security sector reform; countering improvised explosive devices, explosive ordnance disposal and de-mining; civil military planning; cyber defense; military medicine and medical assistance; military training; and civil emergency planning.
Stoltenberg said, “NATO and Iraqi experts will now work on the details of the training programs which will be held in Turkey and Jordan.”
Stoltenberg added that, “NATO’s support for Iraq has been designed to complement efforts carried out by the Global Coalition against ISIL, the European Union, the United Nations and bilateral efforts by individual Allies.”
The defense capacity program for Iraq is part of the Alliance’s Defense Capacity Building Initiative, launched at the NATO Summit in Wales. Its aim is to enable the Alliance to assist its partners in building their defense and security.