Germany seeks early meeting of EU diplomats over Mideast

Heiko Maas (SPD), Foreign Minister, goes through plenary session at the SPD federal party conference after the first ballot for further members of the executive committee in Berlin, German, Saturday, Dec.7, 2019. Maas did not obtain the necessary votes in the first ballot. (Bernd von Jutrczenka/dpa via AP)

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

BERLIN (AP) — Germany’s foreign minister said Sunday that he has proposed bringing forward a regular meeting with counterparts from other European Union countries to the coming week amid escalating tensions in the Middle East.

Heiko Maas said in a statement that “Europe now has an important role in view of the menacing escalation of the conflict between the United States and Iran” and that EU foreign ministers should “quickly agree on a common approach.”

Maas said Europe has reliable channels of communication to all sides that should be used “to the full extent” in the current situation.

Germany will reach out to Iraq to clarify relations following a parliamentary vote to expel foreign troops, he said, adding that “we will respect every decision.”

Germany has about 130 soldiers in Iraq as part of an international assistance and training mission. The German Defense Ministry said late Sunday that a regular rotation of troops replacing some of those currently in Iraq has been suspended.

Maas said Germany stands ready to continue to provide assistance in Iraq “if it is requested and the situation allows it,” adding that the fight against the Islamic State group there is not over. “In order to discuss this with our international partners there should be a meeting of the anti-IS coalition as soon as possible.”

Maas spoke Sunday with his counterparts in France, Britain, Italy and the European Union, the head of NATO and German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer.

Earlier Sunday, the foreign ministry confirmed that the charge d’affaires of the German embassy in Tehran met with Iranian foreign ministry officials, but provided no details.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Recent Videos

Amber's Tuesday Morning #OneMinuteForecast 10/20

Snow & hazardous travel conditions today

NDC OCT 20

Girl Scout Project

High School Volleyball

Grant County Flasher Football

Bishop Ryan Volleyball

Century Football

Warmer Weather?

Corn Yield

District 28 Preview

Amtrak Changes

Monday, October 19th, 2020 - KX Storm Team Evening Forecast - Dave Holder

KX Storm Team Full Evening Forecast w/Tom Schrader 10/19

ATW: Rugby Sibling Teammates

ATW: Velva Football

ATW: Hannah Herbal

Space Heaters

WATCH: Best friend reunion at Georgia pumpkin patch goes viral

Prepare for more widespread snow

More Video

KX News Trending Stories

Don't Miss

More Don't Miss