U.N. Security Council discusses current issues in Iraq

The United Nations Security Council held a meeting on Tuesday regarding the strife facing Iraq.

The Security Council discussed the current problems in Iraq, noting that the country has reached a crucial phase where it will either grow to be a stronger, democratic nation or succumb to increasing instability.

"The country can continue to make important strides in deepening the roots of democracy, pursuing reform, embracing diversity, as well as improving its stature in the international community," Martin Kobler, head of the United Nations Assistance Mission for Iraq, said. "Or Iraq can go down a dangerous path, potholed with political impasse and sectarian violence at each turn, leading to increased instability."

The last four months in Iraq have been the bloodiest in the past five years with around 3,000 people killed and more than 7,000 injured. There has also been unrest among the people of Iraq, some of whom have been staging protests by holding sit-ins on international highways and in public squares.

"The violence in Iraq cannot be separated from the civil war in Syria," Kobler said. "This violence could easily spiral out of control if not urgently addressed."

A representative for Iraq said that the government of Iraq is working on resolving these outstanding issues and asked for an extension of UNAMI's mandate for another year.