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ISIS Crisis

Iraq: Additional U.S. troops are welcome, but 'a little late'

Iraqi Prime Minister Haidar al-Abadi's office released a statement on Saturday applauding the U.S. promise of additional troops to the country — but it added a dig toward President Barack Obama and the White House, too.

"The step is a little late, but we welcome it," the statement, reported by the Daily Mail, said.

There are already about 1,400 American troops in Iraq, who are serving in training and advisory capacities to assist the Iraqi and Kurdish forces combating the Islamic State. The White House made an additional commitment on Friday of up to 1,500 more troops, which Press Secretary Josh Earnest noted would be armed for self-defense, but not sent to perform direct combat roles.

Baghdad had made an official request for more troops, following early offensives from ISIS that collapsed several of the country's military divisions. Iraqi troops have suffered from a lack of training in strategy and logistics, and the U.S. troops will head up camps to help in that regard.