The NATO Training Mission-Iraq (NTM-I) was established in 2004 at the request of the Iraqi Interim Government under the provisions of UN Security Council Resolution 1546. The aim of NTM-I was to assist in the development of Iraqi security forces training structures and institutions so that Iraq could build an effective and sustainable capability that addressed the needs of the nation. NTM-I was not a combat mission but was a distinct mission, under the political control of NATO's North Atlantic Council. Its operational emphasis was on training and mentoring. The activities of the mission were coordinated with Iraqi authorities and the US-led Deputy Commanding General Advising and Training (DCG (A&T)), who was also dual-hatted as the Commander of NTM-I. The mission came to an end in December 2011.
The professionalization of Iraqi Armed Forces Officers training and education and the professional development at the Non-Commissioned Officer Academy both within Iraq and abroad. Complementing institutional education is the NTM-I role in developing Iraqi doctrine. Finally, supporting this line of activity is NATO out-of-country training which has seen over 1800 members of the Iraqi security forces attend specialized training abroad since 2004.
The challenge for the future of NTM-I rests in the transition from being a training provider to becoming a mentor of trainers and ultimately establishing the capability for Iraq to autonomously organise and direct security force training as part of a broader strategic relationship with NATO. 2010 will be a significant year in Iraq, as the United States continues to withdraw their combat forces and the Iraqi Armed Forces and Ministry of Interior take on further security responsibilities. The future main activities will be the standardisation of Iraqi Officer Education and Training (OET), the training of the Iraqi Federal Police and the assistance to the Directorate of Border Security.
Through its activities NTM-I is also helping pave the way for a long-term relationship between the Alliance and Iraq under a Structured Cooperation Framework.
NTM-I operates in four different areas in theatre:
The NTM-I Headquarters (HQ) resides within the Union III Forward Operating Base in the International Zone. NATO staff travel to different ISF locations within the IZ to provide training, advising and mentoring.
The NTM-I Forward base at Ar Rustamiyah, some 15 km south east of Baghdad, supports the Iraqi Military Academy and the Joint Staff College, as well as the Base Defence Battalion that maintains security at Ar Rustamiyah.
NTM-I also operates at the Taji Air Base, some 30 km north west of Baghdad, which supports the training of the Iraqi Senior Non-Commissioned Officer courses and the Battle Staff Training.
The fourth location is Camp Dublin, located south of Baghdad International Airport. This is where the Italian Carabinieri Training Unit carries out the training of the Iraqi Federal Police.
Since inception 23 NATO member countries and one partner country have contributed directly to the training effort through the provision of personnel, funding or equipment donations. Currently, the NTM-I footprint is a small tactical force of around 170 NATO/Partnership for Peace personnel, representing 13 member nations (as at August 2010).
Italian Major General Giovanni Armentani, Deputy Commanding General for the NATO Training Mission, meets with a U.S. Advise and Assist Brigade.
United States – The U.S. provided 60 instructors and a protection company in addition to airlift support and logistics.
Italy – At July 2010, the Italian Army has deployed 90 soldiers to Iraq under NTM-I: a Major General, Deputy Commander of the mission; a senior officer, Advisor of the Iraqi Minister of Defense, in an advisory capacity for training and liaison with the NTM-I HQ; a senior officer, an adviser to Iraq's top military university (National Defense University), which coordinates, along with his staff, the training-instructional and doctrinal development within training institutes for officers at the "National Defence College" and "Joint Staff and Command College"; a senior officer of the Carabinieri, head of the "Gendarmerie Training Division", with a team of about 60 Carabinieri, carries out training of VET; unit of the Carabinieri providing training of Iraqi police at Camp Dublin, trainer of NTM-I area near Baghdad International Airport. Additionally, a senior officer of the Italian Navy serves as the Advisor of the Commander of Naval Forces in Iraq.
Denmark – A contingent of Danish troops has been deployed to train Iraqi forces under NTM-I, numbering 10 trainers and seven soldiers for force protection as of September 2007.
Netherlands – There are 10 military police and 15 trainers in Iraq as of September 2007
Germany, Japan, United Arab Emirates – Jointly conducted a training programme for Iraqi police officers in the UAE from December 2003. Germany also trained Iraqi logistics troops in a separate UAE-based mission as of December 2004. Belgium offered 10 instructors to the latter programme.
Canada, France – Separately offered to conduct training outside Iraq; the former did not specify where, while the latter suggested Qatar.
Hungary – Donated second-hand tanks to the Iraqi Army.
Poland, Bulgaria, Spain, Norway, Germany – Each hosted domestic training programmes for Iraqi security forces. Latvia, Lithuania and Turkey offered to host similar programmes.
Jordan – Although not a NATO member, Jordan's contribution was by far the most extensive, having graduated 50,000 Iraqi police officers by February 2007, plus smaller numbers of Iraqi Army soldiers and Air Force personnel. Jordan has also donated substantial numbers of tanks.
Egypt – Invited an Iraqi Army company to participate in joint military training in 2004.
Ukraine – There are 8 officers supporting the NTM-I mission as February 7, 2008.