Tuesday 29 July 2014
 
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ISIL

Rise of Islamic State tests Syrian army strategy

The growing power of the ultra-hardline Islamic State means the Syrian army is now having to confront a group it has until now been reluctant to attack for political reasons.  

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Saudi king names new spy chief as Iraq crisis spreads

Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah has appointed Prince Khaled bin Bandar as head of intelligence three months after his predecessor, who was in charge of efforts to support Syrian rebels against President Bashar al-Assad, was sacked.

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Army presses Tikrit assault as MPs scramble to fill posts

Iraq's army sent tanks and armoured vehicles to try to dislodge insurgents from the northern city of Tikrit on Sunday, the second day of a pushback against a Sunni militant takeover of large stretches of Iraq. The hardline Sun

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Iraqis in Bahrain agonise over mayhem back home

Iraqis in Bahrain have spoken of their distress at events unfolding back home, where militants have overrun large parts of the country, killed nearly 1,100 people and displaced hundreds of thousands in the past two weeks.  

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Divergent visions could split Iraq's Sunni revolt

The militants dismantling Iraq's borders and threatening regional war are far from united - theirs is a marriage of convenience between ultra-hardline religious zealots and more pragmatic Sunni armed groups, said experts. For

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Militant backers say US air strikes in Iraq would be avenged

Online backers of the Sunni Islamist militants who seized swaths of Iraq this month have said that any US air strikes on the fighters will lead to attacks on Americans. US President Barack Obama has offered up to 300 American advi

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Iran boosts security along Iraq's volatile border

Iran has stepped up surveillance along its long border with Iraq in precaution against a spread of violence from militants who have siezed a swathe of its neighhour, a senior official said. Sunni Islamists from the Islamic State i

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Iran vows to defend Iraq holy sites

Iran will not hesitate to defend Shi'ite Muslim holy sites in neighbouring Iraq against "killers and terrorists", Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday, following rapid advances by Sunni militants there over the past

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Oil majors cut staff in Iraq on violence fears

Some oil companies are pulling foreign staff from Iraq, fearing Sunni militants from the north could strike at major oilfields concentrated in the Shi'ite south despite moves by the Baghdad government to tighten security. Iraq

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US considers action with Iran against Iraq insurgency

The US is contemplating talks with its arch-enemy Iran to support the Iraqi government in its battle with Sunni Islamist insurgents who routed Baghdad's army and seized the north of the country in the past week. The stunning o

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