Germany, Netherlands suspend military training operations in Iraq after US warning

Germany, Netherlands suspend military training operations in Iraq after US warning
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Germany and the Netherlands announced Wednesday that they will suspend military training operations in Iraq after the United States warned of an increase in Iran-related threats, according to Reuters.

The Netherlands has 169 military and civilian personnel in Iraq, about 50 of which are involved in training Kurdish troops in Erbil. Germany has about 160 troops training Iraqi forces, according to the news service.

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A German defense ministry spokesperson told Reuters that training programs would resume in the next few days and that the German government has no indications of imminent attacks on Western interests in Iraq by Iranian forces.

A Dutch government source cited an unspecified security threat but did not offer any further details, according to Reuters.

On Wednesday, the U.S. State Department recalled all nonemergency personnel from Iraq and advised U.S. citizens against traveling to the country, saying the ongoing standoff with Iran had increased the risk of terror attacks or kidnappings.

The U.S. recently announced it would deploy a U.S. carrier strike to the Persian Gulf, citing “troubling and escalatory” actions by Iran.

"In response to a number of troubling and escalatory indications and warnings, the United States is deploying the USS Abraham Lincoln Carrier Strike Group and a bomber task force to the U.S. Central Command region to send a clear and unmistakable message to the Iranian regime that any attack on United States interests or on those of our allies will be met with unrelenting force," national security adviser John BoltonJohn Robert BoltonIraq War looms over Trump battle with Iran Overnight Defense: Trump officials say efforts to deter Iran are working | Trump taps new Air Force secretary | House panel passes defense bill that limits border wall funds Trump officials say US efforts to deter Iran have worked MORE said last Sunday.