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NC Troops Deploy To Mideast After U.S. Embassy Attack

U.S. Army 82nd Airborne Division
U.S. Army soldiers with the 82nd Airborne Division's 1st Brigade Combat Team board U.S. Air Force planes Jan. 1, 2020, to deploy to the Middle East.

President Donald Trump has ordered about 750 soldiers from the Army's 82nd Airborne Division deployed to the Middle East with about 3,000 more preparing for possible deployment in the next several days.

The troop movement comes after Tuesday’s attack on the U.S. Embassy in Iraq by dozens of Iran-supported militiamen. U.S. Marines were immediately sent from Kuwait to reinforce the compound.

In announcing the new deployment, Defense Secretary Mark Esper didn’t specify where the infantry battalion from the 82nd Airborne Division at Fort Bragg would be heading. But a U.S. official tells The Associated Press they'll go to Kuwait and a full brigade of about 4,000 soldiers may eventually be sent.

"This deployment is an appropriate and precautionary action taken in response to increased threat levels against U.S. personnel and facilities, such as we witnessed in Baghdad today," Esper said Tuesday. "The United States will protect our people and interests anywhere they are found around the world."