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Monday, October 10, 2011     INTELLIGENCE BRIEFING

U.S. military turns over Iraqi training facilities
to State Dept.

BAGHDAD — The U.S. military is preparing to transfer more than 20 Iraqi training bases to the State Department.


Officials said the State Department's International Narcotics and Law Enforcement would take over a massive training program in Iraq. They said INL has been working with the military's Iraq Training and Advisory Mission-Police, or ITAM, to oversee instruction for Iraq's more than 500,000 police and security forces.

"The intent was for INL to integrate INL leadership within the ITAM beginning in early 2011 in order to match up the ITAM end of mission and the INL start of mission plan,," U.S. Army Brig. Gen. Michael Smith, director of ITAM-Police, said.

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Instead, the transition between the U.S. military and the State Department began in August. So far, 10 training facilities have been transferred from ITAM to INL, and the rest would come under State Department responsibility in October.

The State Department has also taken over security for U.S. diplomats and other government personnel in Iraq. Officials said the department has drafted a plan for a force of 5,000 to protect the U.S. embassy and consulates.

"Using on-the-job mentoring and advising, the INL advisors will work side by side their Iraqi counterparts on key issues of importance," Smith said. "This approach will develop personal relationships, build trust and enable access to key Ministry of Interiors officials."

Officials said the State Department was deploying veteran law enforcement officers to serve as advisers to the Iraqi security forces, particularly commanders and senior officers. They said many of the trainers were specialists in communications and forensics and assigned to complete a program to make the Iraqis self-sufficient.

"Our mission is a refinement mission," INL police development program director Audie Holloway said. "Theirs [ITAM] was a building mission. We would not have had the manpower to accomplish what they have."

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