PM Abbott leaves options open for ground troops in Iraq

PM Abbott leaves options open for ground troops in Iraq

Prime Minister Tony Abbott has left open the possibility of Australia joining a ground campaign against Islamic State militants down the trackĀ  in Iraq.

Mr Abbott has not confirmed nor denied the possibility, saying he wants to see how operations continue over the coming weeks.

Previously, The Prime Minister has said that Australia has no intention of committing combat troops on the ground in Iraq.

Mr Abbott says Australia’s mission in Iraq is “crystal clear,” and that is to “disrupt and degrade the Islamic State.

“We’ve got a very clear way to do this, by flying combat air patrols over Iraq, which we’re doing, and by advising and assisting some of the better units of the Iraqi armed forces,” he told Macquarie Radio in Sydney today.

But Opposition Leader Bill Shorten has criticised the announcement, saying the government has not provided a strong enough case to put more Australian lives in danger.

It comes as AustralianĀ  Super Hornets have begun flying combat missions since Sunday but are yet to use their weapons, waiting on standby until authorities agree on a final legal framework for soldiers to be deployed in Iraq.

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Libby Dreyer
Libby Dreyer 1729 posts

Libby has worked as a Senior Journalist at National Radio News since February 2011. She graduated with a Bachelor of Journalism from the University of Canberra in December 2010.

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