State Department increases embassy security in Baghdad

The United States has moved between 50 and 100 additional military personnel to the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad to help provide security, according to CNN. 

The numbers include a mix of U.S. Army and Marine personnel, including Marines who specialize in high-threat embassy protection, a U.S. official told CNN. 

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The move comes as Sunni militants with the group Islamic State of Iraq and Syria have overrun a number of large cities in Iraq. The group announced Sunday it has executed a large number of Iraqi air force recruits. The State Department and others condemned the reported executions, though the initial numbers of dead could not be confirmed. 

The State Department and the Pentagon announced Sunday the increase in security at the embassy, but the number of additional personnel had not been reported. 

Additionally, some staff have been relocated. The embassy, however, continues to remain open. 

"As a result of ongoing instability and violence in certain areas of Iraq, Embassy Baghdad is reviewing its staffing requirements in consultation with the State Department," State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki said in a statement. "Some additional U.S. government security personnel will be added to the staff in Baghdad."

The Defense Department announced it was increasing its presence at the request of the State Department. 

"At the request of the State Department, the U.S. military is providing security assistance for our diplomatic facilities in Baghdad," Pentagon press secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby said Sunday. "A small number of DOD personnel are augmenting State Department security assets in Baghdad to help ensure the safety of our facilities."

Some embassy staff were being moved by commercial and chartered flights. The Defense Department said it has airlift assets ready if the State Department requests it.

President Obama has not ruled out a number of military options in the country, including air strikes. But the administration has said it is contingent on Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki creating a move inclusive government. 

The administration has ruled out additional boots on the ground. 

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