The US military is sending troops to Cameroon to conduct airborne surveillance and intelligence operations in the fight against Boko Haram, the White House said Wednesday.
Approximately 90 soldiers began deploying Monday, and a force of up to 300 will eventually be sent to Cameroon, US President Barack Obama said in a letter to Congress announcing the move.
The troops will be armed for their own protection and will stay in the region until their support is no longer need, Obama said.
Boko Haram, which has pledged its allegiance to the Islamic State group, has stepped up attacks in Nigeria and northern Cameroon, since Nigerian President Muhammadu Buhari took office in May.
The group, which seeks to establish a state with the strictest interpretation of Islamic law, has killed thousands of people in the region.