WARSAW (AFP): Poland on Tuesday temporarily closed its embassy in Baghdad over security concerns in Iraq, which has been plagued by Islamic State militants.

“Following the worsening of the security situation in Iraq, Foreign Minister Radoslaw Sikorski has decided to temporarily suspend the activities of the Polish embassy in Baghdad as of September 9,” the ministry said in a statement. It added that its consular agency in Iraq’s Arbil - the seat of the Kurdish regional government - would remain open.

Poland is among the 10 countries that took part in a NATO summit meeting last Friday designed to establish a coalition against the radical Islamic State (IS), which has overrun the region.

But the EU member has ruled out the participation of its soldiers in ground operations.

IS militants, said by US officials to be about 10,000-strong, have captured swathes of territory straddling northern Iraq and southern Syria with lightning speed.