15 June 2014 - The 2003 invasion of Iraq is not to blame for the violent insurgency now gripping the country, former UK prime minister Tony Blair has said.
He told the BBC there would still be a "major problem" in Iraq even without the toppling of Saddam Hussein in 2003.
He insisted the current crisis was an issue that "affects us all" and urged more western intervention in the area.
Critics have rejected the comments as "bizarre" with one accusing Mr Blair of "washing his hands of responsibility".
Sir Christopher Meyer, Britain's ambassador to the US from 1997 to 2003, said the handling of the campaign against Saddam Hussein was "perhaps the most significant reason" for the current sectarian violence.
"We are reaping what we sowed in 2003. This is not hindsight. We knew in the run-up to war that the overthrow of Saddam Hussein would seriously destabilise Iraq after 24 years of his iron rule," he said in the Mail on Sunday. read more>>>