World News

Aug 20, 2014 7:32 AM by Associated Press

Germany prepared to send arms to Kurds in Iraq

BERLIN (AP) - Germany says it is prepared to arm Kurdish fighters battling Sunni insurgents in northern Iraq.

Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier says Germany would closely coordinate its efforts with France, Britain and other European countries who are already delivering weapons to the Kurds.

Wednesday's announcement follows intense domestic and international pressure for the German government to provide more than humanitarian assistance to those fighting the Islamic State group, which has taken control of large parts of Iraq in recent weeks.

Sending weapons would be a significant step for Germany, which traditionally has shied away from such moves.

Steinmeier said the decision was taken in light of the fact that a collapse of Kurdish defenses could precipitate a wider catastrophe in Iraq that would directly affect Europe.

(Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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