World

Germany to send up to 100 troops to Iraq to train Kurds fighting Islamic State group

  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and German Economy and Energy Minister Sigmar Gabriel, left, arrive for the weekly cabinet meeting at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel, right, and German Economy and Energy Minister Sigmar Gabriel, left, arrive for the weekly cabinet meeting at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)  (The Associated Press)

  • German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives for the weekly cabinet meeting at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

    German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrives for the weekly cabinet meeting at the chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)  (The Associated Press)

The German Cabinet has agreed to send up to 100 troops to the northern Iraqi city of Irbil to train Kurdish forces for their fight against the Islamic State group.

Parliament is to debate the mission in January but since the government has a large parliamentary majority the mission is expected to be approved.

Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier told reporters Wednesday that "we have to make sure the front line against (the Islamic State group) is held."

Germany has already provided weapons and other military gear worth 70 million euros ($87.8 million) to aid Iraq's Kurdish peshmerga fighters.

Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen said Germany had "good experiences with the peshmerga. They are reliable and motivated, but they need good equipment and good training."