Iraq trying to calm tensions

Bahrain to test emergency sirens to check preparedness

Iraqi soldiers keep guard at the entrance of the West Qurna-1 oilfield operated by Exxon Mobil near Basra, Iraq. — Reuters

Europe will not succumb to Iran ultimatums: French minister

Iraq will send delegations to Washington and Tehran to help "halt tension" amid fears of a confrontation between the United States and Iran in the Middle East, Prime Minister Adel Abdul Mahdi said on Tuesday.

He said there were no Iraqi groups that wanted to push towards a war, two days after a rocket fired in Baghdad landed close to the US Embassy, the latest in a series of regional attacks the United States believes may have been inspired by Iran.

US President Donald Trump said on Monday Iran would be met with "great force" if it attacked US interests in the Middle East.

Meanwhile, a statement issued by the Bahraini Ministry of Interior via Twitter said that Bahrain will test emergency sirens Wednesday in some areas of the country to review emergency plans.

Bahrain’s Public Security Presidency said the testing comes as part of periodic steps to “review national emergency plans.”

This includes testing the preparedness of emergency sirens.

“Testing of those sirens will take place in some areas, starting from tomorrow (Wednesday) at 11 a.m. for half an hour,” the statement added.

French Finance Minister Bruno Le Maire said in Paris on Tuesday that Europe will not succumb to ultimatums from Iran

“I do not think that Europe will get drawn into this idea of an ultimatum,” Le Maire told reporters.

Le Maire said Europeans were facing extremely strong pressure from the United States regarding trade with Iran, and that threats by Tehran to pull out of its nuclear deal with global powers were not helpful in that regard. — Aghencies