American military officials are stepping up delivery of bomb-detection dogs to Iraq with Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki’s government under pressure for using equipment that may be ineffective in finding explosives.
Army Maj. Sylvester Wegwu says the first 25 of 145 trained bomb-sniffing dogs are due to arrive on Friday in Baghdad.
The airlift comes as questions are raised about the capabilities of a wand-like, bomb-detection device widely used at checkpoints across Iraq.
Wegwu, who works as military adviser to the Baghdad police college, says the remaining 120 dogs will be delivered over the course of the year.
The dogs will be paired with Iraqi police handlers at the college and will undergo training as a team.