Defeat-ISIS Coalition in Iraq

Personnel: up to 143 NZDF personnel are deployed to the Middle East in roles associated with the Defeat-ISIS Coalition in Iraq

The majority are based at the combined NZ and Australian Building Partner Capacity (BPC) mission at Taji Military Complex in Iraq. The purpose of the BPC mission is to prepare Iraqi Security Forces units for combat and stabilisation operations. Training includes basic weapons skills, individual and unit military skills to prepare for combat operations as well as other skills like medical support, logistics and training on the laws of armed conflict.

Adjustments to the Mission

There have been some approved adjustments to the deployment since Cabinet first agreed to deploy NZDF troops to Iraq in 2015. These changes have been in response to the evolving security situation and coalition headquarters requests and include:

  • providing mobile training in coalition bases beyond the Taji Military Complex (approved training sites are the coalition base in Besmaya, Al Taqqadum Air Base and Qayarrah West airfield, although no NZDF personnel have conducted training at Qayarrah West as yet);

  • training of police, emergency response and border guards (not just the army);

  • deployment of three intelligence personnel to Qatar and one to Kuwait (now concluded), and one legal adviser to the Headquarters Combined Joint Forces Land Component Command in Baghdad;

  • deployment of a NZ Army Brigadier as Deputy Commanding General of the Combined Joint Forces Land Component Command, Operation Inherent Resolve for nine months (now concluded);

  • NZDF personnel already deployed to Iraq have been approved to provide mentoring to Iraqi Security Forces inside the Taji Military Complex at the North Baghdad Operational Command (likely a team of one to two personnel at a time, providing specific mentoring to staff on planning and coordinating operations; planning and conducting logistics functions; integrating coalition resources into missions; conducting training needs analysis and training design & delivery). The Command is primarily responsible for planning and controlling the conduct of security operations immediately north of Baghdad, including the protection of Taji Military Complex; and

  • an increase in the NZDF’s quick reaction force protection responsibilities inside the Taji Military Complex.

Current Commitment

In support of the main deployment to Taji, a number of NZDF personnel are deployed to other roles related to the Defeat-ISIS coalition around the region which include:

  • 108 personnel at the Taji Military Complex, Iraq.

  • Eight staff officers at the Coalition Joint Forces Land Component Command in Baghdad, conducting roles in training planning, support of ongoing planning and logistics, public information and the provision of legal advice;

  • Three personnel supporting intelligence functions within the US Central Command Forward Headquarters in Qatar;

  • Up to six personnel deployed to the region providing logistics support for our deployment in Iraq.

The mandate for the deployments to Iraq, Kuwait and Qatar expires in November 2018.

For more information on Operation Inherent Resolve go link) (external link)

Read the media release about the number of ISF personnel trained by the BPC mission passing the 12,000 mark(external link) (external link)