June 27, 2019 / 9:23 AM / 3 months ago

Iraq will not take sides amid Middle East tension: Iraqi deputy PM

FILE PHOTO: Iraqi Oil Minister Thamer Ghadhban speaks to the media at the ministry's headquarters in Baghdad, Iraq May 16, 2019. REUTERS/Khalid Al-Mousily

LONDON (Reuters) - Iraq will not take sides amid tensions in the Middle East, the Iraqi deputy prime minister said on Thursday, as a row between the United States and Iran escalated.

“We shall not align ourselves with certain countries or be party in an alliance against others,” Thamer Ghadhban, who is also Iraq’s oil minister, said in London.

Recent events in the Middle East, particularly in the Gulf of Oman, “posed a serious threat to peace in the region and the free and uninterrupted passage of oil tankers through the Strait of Hormuz,” he told the CWC Iraq Petroleum Conference.

Reporting by Ahmad Ghaddar and Shadia Nasralla; Editing by Edmund Blair

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