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France Says Will Supply Arms To Iraqi Kurds Within 'Hours'

President Francois Hollande's office says France will supply arms "in the coming hours" in response to a request from Iraq's Kurdish leadership.

A statement by Hollande's office said, "To meet the urgent needs voiced by the Kurdish regional authorities, the head of state (Hollande) decided in liaison with Baghdad to ship arms in the coming hours."

The announcement came after the European Union on August 12 failed to agree on a unified position to supply weapons to Iraqi Kurds battling Islamic State (IS) militants but said member states could send arms individually.

Iraqi Kurdish President Masud Barzani has urged other countries to provide the Kurds with weapons to help fight IS militants.

EU ambassadors said after an extraordinary meeting in Brussels that EU governments could send arms to the Kurdish Pershmerga forces "in close coordination with Iraqi authorities."

Based on reporting by AP, AFP, and Reuters