The Chief of the Defence Force, Lieutenant General Tim Keating, says New Zealand troops deployed to Iraq will have force protection for self defence and and all forces will be armed. Lieutenant General Keating briefed media on some aspects of the deployment soon after Prime Minister John Key announced it would go ahead. Lieutenant General Keating said any deployment such as this carried risks, so force protection would be sent with the trainers, able to respond in self-defence. He said safety would be paramount and all of those on the ground would carry arms. While no status of forces agreement had been resolved, he said there were other ways to ensure legal protections for the troops. All of those on the ground in Iraq would be armed.