Australia has signalled its willingness to contribute Super Hornets to US-led air strikes in Iraq, with the defence force “at a high state of readiness”.

The defence minister, David Johnston, said Australia was yet to be approached to provide assistance other than humanitarian relief, but would continue to talk to the US about steps to preserve civilian life from the threat posed by the Islamic State (Isis).

The Labor opposition has requested a briefing on the latest developments, while the Greens argued military engagement in Iraq could “make the situation worse” in Iraq. […]