British soldiers train Kurdish forces in Iraq

British soldiers are in Iraq and working close to the front line helping train Kurdish forces in the fight against IS, the Ministry of Defence said.

A "small specialist team" is based near the Kurdish capital of Erbil in northern Iraq after their deployment was approved by Defence Secretary Michael Fallon.

An MoD spokeswoman said: "The Defence Secretary has approved the deployment of a small specialist team of non-combat Army trainers which is now in the Erbil area providing instruction on operating, employing and maintaining the heavy machine guns that were gifted by the UK last month."

They are in the war-torn region training Peshmerga forces in the use of heavy machine guns the UK supplied to them in September.

The Sunday Times reported the soldiers were from the 2nd Battalion the Yorkshire Regiment, which is based in Cyprus.