BAGHDAD ø Iraq's interim government has agreed that the nation's new
military will be based on voluntary service.
Iraqi officials said the Interim Governing Council has determined that
Iraq will not renew the draft employed by the former regime of Saddam
Hussein. They said the military will be based on an all-volunteer force
similar to the United States and European Union countries.
In Amman, Jordan continued to train Iraqi police and security forces. On
Thursday, a class of 500 police officers completed training and underwent
graduation in Amman, Middle East Newsline reported.
Iraq has been training to complete the first phase of its new army,
composed of 27 battalions. This calls for three light infantry divisions in
a 40,000-member army.
Officials said Iraq could decide on a second stage of development that
would expand the
army to 60,000. Baghdad also plans to restore the nation's navy and air
"Iraq is passing through a very difficult security phase and all efforts
should be focused on putting an end to the state of chaos by building
effective security forces capable of restoring stability in the country,"
Iraqi police chief Maj. Gen. Taleb Abbas said.
So far, Jordan has trained and graduated 1,900 Iraqi police officers at
Amman's police academy. Jordan agreed to train 32,000 Iraqi policemen by the
end of 2005.