UK to help deliver weapons to Kurds

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Britain will play a role in the rescue of Ezidi refugees from northern Iraq, says British PM Cameron

Britain will play a role in the rescue of Ezidi refugees from northern Iraq, says British PM Cameron

LONDON - British Prime Minister David Cameron has said that the U.K. will be “playing a role” in helping deliver weapons to Kurds and rescuing Ezidi refugees trapped in Iraq. 

Speaking after chairing a Cabinet Office Briefing Room meeting on the issue, Cameron said: “We need a plan to get these people off that mountain and get them to a place of safety, and I can confirm that detailed plans are now being put in place and are under way, and that Britain will play a role in delivering that."

France announced Wednesday that they were ready to arm Iraqi Kurds fighting self-proclaimed Islamist State (IS) militants. 

However, the British prime minister said that the priority of the U.K. was "to deal with this desperate humanitarian situation with people who are exposed, starving and dying of thirst on this mountain, getting them to a place of safety.

"In terms of the ammunition they’re [Kurds] getting," he said, "Britain is going to be playing a role in getting that to them."   

Cameron, who has been facing calls by some MPs to recall the parliament, told reporters: “This is a humanitarian operation that Britain is involved in so I don’t think it’s necessary to recall the parliament for that.”

Amid fierce clashes with the Iraqi army and the Kurdish peshmerga forces, IS militants have tightened their grip on northern Iraq, seizing towns with minority populations, as well as Iraq’s largest dam near Mosul.

The militants captured Sinjar and Rabia in the Nineveh province last week, forcing thousands of Turkmen, Arabs, Christians and Ezidis to flee.

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