Iraq Crisis: International Boost to Arms and Aid Supply

Iraq Crisis: International Boost to Arms and Aid Supply

BBC: The delivery of arms and aid to Iraq is being stepped up, in an international push to tackle jihadist militants and help those who have fled their advance.

France says it will arm Iraq’s Kurds, who have been fighting Islamic State (IS) militants. Kurdish forces are already getting US military support.

Meanwhile, the UK has confirmed it will join a mission to rescue thousands of civilians trapped by IS on a mountain.

Many of those stranded belong to the Yazidi sect.

They are among tens of thousands of people – mostly members of religious minorities – who are sheltering on Mount Sinjar in northern Iraq, and are in need of desperate humanitarian assistance, according to the United Nations.

US Secretary of State John Kerry said teams on the ground were making “a very rapid and critical assessment because we understand it’s urgent to try to move those people off the mountain”.

Meanwhile, British Prime Minister David Cameron says the UK will play a role in an international rescue mission, the details of which “are now being put in place”.

US Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel: “This is not a combat boots on the ground kind of operation”

Earlier on Wednesday, French President Francois Hollande said his country would supply arms to Iraq’s Kurds.

A statement from Mr Hollande’s office said the arms would be supplied “in response to the urgent need expressed by the regional authorities in Kurdistan”.

More on this and video: http://www.bbc.com/news/world-europe-28770519

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