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Iraq to spend USD 3.8 billion on arming government forces

BAGHDAD, June 22 (KUNA) -- Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammad Al-Soudani on Saturday inaugurated a new aerial defense operation center and revealed USD 3.8 billion would be earmarked to boost the armament of the national forces.
The new radar-equipped center has been established as part of a plan to renovate the infrastructure of observing and securing the Iraqi air space and enhancing prompt response to any threats, the prime minister's office said in a statement.
It quoted Al-Soudani as saying that the center had been built in coordination with the French defense hardware company, Thales, adding that the government specialized USD 3.8 billion to upgrade the Iraqi forces' armament.
The role of the Iraqi security forces is crucial in the near future after the conclusion of the mandate of the international coalition forces, he said. (end) ahh.rk