US sends more military advisers to Kurdistan


The US has sent 130 more military advisors to the Kurdish region of northern Iraq, Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel says.

The marines and special operations forces will assess the humanitarian situation and will not be engaged in combat, a US defence official said.

The US has been carrying out air strikes against fighters from militant group Islamic State (IS).

IS fighters have forced tens of thousands to flee their homes.

"This is not a combat boots on the ground kind of operation," Mr Hagel said, in remarks made at Camp Pendleton in California.

The "assessment team members" had arrived in the northern city of Irbil and would "give more in-depth assessment of where we can continue to help," he said.