Netanyahu Lobbies World Powers to Stem Iraqi Kurd Setbacks

(Reuters) Dan Williams - Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is lobbying world powers to prevent further setbacks to Iraqi Kurds as they lose ground to Baghdad's army, Israeli officials say. Iraqi armed forces retook the oil-rich Kirkuk region last week, delivering a blow to the Kurds' statehood quest. Israeli officials said Netanyahu raised the Iraqi Kurds' plight in phone calls with German Chancellor Angela Merkel last week and with Russian President Vladimir Putin on Wednesday. It has also come up in his contacts with France, and Israeli national security adviser Meir Ben-Shabbat has been discussing the matter with Trump administration officials in Washington. An Israeli government official said Israel wanted to see Iraqi Kurds provided with the means to protect themselves. Another Israeli official framed Netanyahu's efforts as a moral imperative: "They (Kurds) are a deeply pro-Western people who deserve support."

2017-10-23 00:00:00

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