Middle East

France discusses military options for Iraq and Syria

French President Francois Hollande attends a ceremony to award journalists with the Erik Izraelewicz prize for economic stories in Paris June 18, 2014. (REUTERS/Philippe Wojazer)

PARIS: France's president is holding an emergency meeting to discuss possible military options for Iraq and Syria, after recent advances by Islamist extremist fighters.

A French diplomatic official says that any military action should be part of a broader political plan for calming tensions in Iraq, including Sunnis and Kurds.

France pushed for international intervention in Syria last year, and argues that the international community's failure to act more decisively in Syria led to the latest unrest in Iraq.

The official said that France has not been asked for military help in Iraq at this stage but is considering its options at Thursday's meeting in President Francois Hollande's office. The official was not authorized to be publicly named speaking of sensitive military issues.





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