Statement by Charles Michel, President of the European Council, on the situation in Iraq

The cycle of violence, provocations and retaliations which we have witnessed In Iraq over the past few weeks has to stop. Further escalation must be avoided at all cost.

Iraq remains a very fragile country.

Too many weapons and too many militias are slowing the process towards a return to normal daily life for Iraq’s citizens.

The risk is a generalised flare up of violence in the whole region and the rise of obscure forces of terrorism that thrive at times of religious and nationalist tensions.