Britain would ``favourably consider`` supplying Kurds with arms: Report

Britain would "favourably consider" a request for arms from the Kurds to help them battle Sunni militants who have seized much of Iraq, the BBC reported.

Reuters| Last Updated: Aug 15, 2014, 14:23 PM IST

London: Britain would "favourably consider" a request for arms from the Kurds to help them battle Sunni militants who have seized much of Iraq, the BBC reported on Friday, citing unidentified sources.

The United States has asked European countries to supply arms and ammunition to Kurdish forces, US and European officials have said.
Several European governments, including France, Germany, the Czech Republic and the Netherlands, have said they will send arms to the Kurds or are considering doing so.

The BBC quoted Downing Street sources as saying that the Kurds had not yet asked Britain for direct help but that any request would be considered with an open mind.
A spokesman for Prime Minister David Cameron could not be immediately reached for comment.

The fighters of Iraq`s semi-autonomous Kurdish region are struggling against better-armed militants from the Islamic State group, which has swept across northern Iraq in recent weeks, pushing back Kurdish forces and driving tens of thousands of minority Yazidis and Christians from their homes.

Cameron has so far said Britain`s response would be limited to a humanitarian effort to help the Yazidis.

European Union foreign ministers will hold an emergency meeting on Friday to discuss the region`s response to major crises including the conflict in Iraq, the EU said on Wednesday.