IRAQ was close to all-out sectarian war yesterday after Sunni Muslim militants seized control of its entire western border.
Notoriously violent ISIS fighters, whom Al Qaeda describe as "too bloodthirsty", pushed back Government forces as US Secretary of State John Kerry flew to Baghdad.
In tense talks with prime minister Nouri al-Maliki, he warned that the fate of the country may be decided in the next week, and urged the Shia-led Government to boost the chances of peace by including Sunnis and Kurds in its ranks.
The Americans are also thought to have told Mr al-Maliki he should quit if he cannot form a government of national unity.
In Washington, President Obama, who has refused to carry out air strikes, said that if Mr al-Maliki's Government was not able to "set aside sectarian preferences" then "no amount of military action by the United States can hold that country together".
ISIS are now a step closer to their dream of a cross-border Sunni empire from the Mediterranean to the Gulf after they seized the last border posts along Iraq's borders with Jordan and Syria.
Jordan put its troops on a state of alert along the 112-mile stretch.
Fate of Iraq will be 'decided next week' warns US
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