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Islamic State trains with American armored vehicles in Iraq
The Islamic State has released photographs detailing the training of its so-called "Third Armored Brigade" in Iraq's northern province of Ninewa. The images show the use of American-made Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicles, as well as old Soviet armor. In addition to displaying the jihadists training with these vehicles, the fighters are also shown undergoing weapons training with AK-47 assault rifles and rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs).
The vehicles were likely captured from the Iraqi military after the fall of Mosul last year or in subsequent battles. In June, the Islamic State showcased its "spoils" gained from fighting the Iraqi Security Forces near the town of Al Karmah, which sits in between Fallujah and Baghdad. Numerous Humvees, cargo trucks, fuel tankers, and US-made MRAPS were shown have been captured by the Islamic State.
The Islamic State is known to have operated 69 training camps in Iraq and Syria. Thirty-six of these were operated in Iraq, with the other 33 in Syria. More than 140 other jihadist training camps have been identified as being operational in the region since 2012 by The Long War Journal.
[Source: By Caleb Weiss, Threat Matrix, The Long War Journal, NJ, 03Nov15]
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