LEXINGTON, Ky. (AP) — The Kentucky National Guard is sending about 200 soldiers to Kosovo for a year to provide security.

Kosovo is a partially recognized state in southeast Europe, with a population of approximately 1.8 million.

The United States is deploying troops to the state in order to normalize Kosovo’s relations with Serbia, strengthen rule of law, and promote economic growth and security.

The 1st Battalion, 149th Infantry is deploying this week.

The guard said units from Barbourville, Middlesboro, and Ravenna will make up Task Force Mountain Warrior to provide security operations throughout the region.

The units will be led by Lt. Col. Jason Mendez and Command Sgt. Major Will Long.

The guard previously announced that members of the 438th Military Police Company out of Murray will also deploy to Kosovo this week.