Iraq’s political crisis hit a new nadir, with the 25 January killing of four Sunni protesters in Fallujah by the Iraqi army. Relations among the political parties are strained to breaking point. The country, warned one speaker at a London energy conference, is “teetering on the edge of civil war”.

Given Baghdad’s track record of muddling through crises, a full-blown civil war, certainly at time of writing, remains unlikely. But Prime Minister, Nuri al-Maliki, clearly needs a major initiative to reach out to his rivals and break the political deadlock. (CONTINUED - 1146 WORDS)