[size=36]Iraq: We will not participate in the maritime alliance to protect navigation in the Gulf and reject any Israeli participation[/size]
[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]
The Foreign Ministry said on Thursday it would not join an international naval mission to protect commercial navigation in the Strait of Hormuz and other areas.
The ministry also rejected any Israeli participation in the coalition, saying security in the Gulf was the responsibility of the Gulf states.
Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates have announced that they have joined the international mission to protect oil tankers in Gulf waters.
The Iraqi Foreign Ministry spokesman, Ahmed Al-Sahaf, confirmed last Tuesday his country's refusal to join any international force protecting the waterways in the Arabian Gulf, if Israel participated.
"Regarding security in the Arabian Gulf, Iraq has put forward its vision, which states that the security of navigation in the Gulf corridors is the responsibility of the countries bordering it," he told RT.
He added that "Iraq refuses to join any security and military force based on providing protection in the Gulf, including the Zionist entity, and the formation of an international protection force in this region will add more complexity and Iraq will not be a party to it."
He pointed out that "this position is based on an Iraqi vision that indicates that security is equal and indivisible, so everyone should contribute to the security of the region from its geographical area."