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Pentagon deploys more than 3K additional troops to Middle East

Pentagon deploys more than 3K additional troops to Middle East
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More than 3,000 American troops will be sent to the Middle East following the U.S. strike that killed top Iranian Gen. Qassem Soleimani in Iraq, the Pentagon said Friday.

The troops will that will be deployed are from the Immediate Response Force of the 82nd Airborne Division, a Defense Department official told The Hill.

Iran has vowed "harsh revenge" for the killing of Soleimani. The Quds Force leader died Thursday in an airstrike at Baghdad International Airport alongside Abu Mahdi al-Muhandis, the deputy commander of the Iranian-backed Iraqi militia Popular Mobilization Forces.

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Secretary of State Mike PompeoMike PompeoBiden should expand contact between US and Taiwanese officials On The Money: Retail sales drop in latest sign of weakening economy | Fast-food workers strike for minimum wage | US officials raise concerns over Mexico's handling of energy permits US officials raise concerns over Mexico's handling of energy permits MORE has said the action, which was ordered by President TrumpDonald TrumpFacebook temporarily bans ads for weapons accessories following Capitol riots Sasse, in fiery op-ed, says QAnon is destroying GOP Section 230 worked after the insurrection, but not before: How to regulate social media MORE, was in response to "imminent threats" to American lives.

Trump tweeted that Soleimani "should have been taken out many years ago!"

Thursday's airstrike marks a major escalation in tensions between Washington and Tehran after a militia backed by Iran and its supporters stormed the U.S. Embassy in Baghdad on Tuesday. That assault prompted Defense Secretary Mark EsperMark EsperBiden needs to fill the leadership gaps on Day One US meets troops reduction goal in Afghanistan, Iraq Overnight Defense: National Guard boosts DC presence ahead of inauguration | Lawmakers demand probes into troops' role in Capitol riot | Financial disclosures released for Biden Pentagon nominee MORE to announce the immediate deployment of 750 U.S. troops to the region.

Updated at 3:08 p.m.