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Iraq

Iraq’s new Prime Minister – Haider Al-Abadi

THE LEVANT EXCLUSIVE – Sources in Iraq have confirmed to The Levant this Monday that Iraq’s president has formally asked Haider Al-Abadi, the Shi’ite coalition’s nominee for prime minister, to form a government. The announcement came following reports that Parliament broke up all sessions until August 19 after lawmakers were …

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Iraqi Shi’ite coalition close to nominating prime minister

THE LEVANT – A bloc comprising Iraq’s biggest Shi’ite parties is close to nominating a prime minister, the deputy speaker of parliament said on Monday, directly challenging Nuri al-Maliki who has refused to give up his bid for a third term. Haider al-Abadi’s comments in a tweet came after police sources …

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The desperate case of the Yezidis

THE LEVANT – Iraq’s politicians are appealing to the international community to help battle Islamic State fighters as their dramatic push into the country’s north continues. The Islamic State (IS) jihadist group controls much of northwestern Iraq. Recently, IS militants managed to oust Pershmerga and Yezidi minorities, sparking an exodus …

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Airlines divided over flying Iraq after MH17 crash

Source: Financial Times A split has emerged between airlines about whether it is safe to fly over war-torn Iraq, after Malaysia Airlines flight MH17 was downed in Ukraine. British Airways and Etihad Airways are among those continuing to fly passenger jets over Iraq, while Air France and Virgin Atlantic have …

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Hezbollah commander killed in Iraq

Lebanese Officials say a commander with the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah was killed in Iraq.The  officials, close to the Shiite Hezbollah, say Ibrahim Mohammed al-Haj was killed during the past week while on a “jihadi mission” without providing further details.It is the first known Hezbollah death in Iraq since Sunni …

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Iraqi Sunni scholars disavow ISIL-supporting clerics

THE LEVANT – The Iraqi cabinet’s scholars committee on Wednesday (July 30th) disavowed clerics who support the “Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant” (ISIL). The group, a Sunni institution, decided to disavow clerics who support ISIL or keep silent over ISIL crimes and do not do their duty: warning people …

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ISIL orders Iraqi women to wear full veil

THE LEVANT – ISIL, the off shoot of Al Qaeda has ordered the women to wear full veils in their controlled area. The militants have issued a warning that states that women do not wear full face veil will be punished under Islamic law. Earlier the militants have captured the cities …

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IS dynamites Prophets shrines in Iraq

THE LEVANT  – Sunni militants from the Islamic State group that controls large parts of Iraq have blown up a Shiite shrine in the city of Mosul, an official and witnesses said on Saturday. Jihadists destroyed the Nabi Shiyt (Prophet Seth) shrine in Mosul, the de facto Iraqi capital of the “caliphate” …

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The Kurdish Fouad Masoum named president of Iraq

Iraq’s parliament elected senior Kurdish lawmaker Fouad Masoum as president on Thursday, a long-awaited step in creating a new government capable of countering a Sunni Muslim insurgency. Iraq’s politicians have been in deadlock over forming a new government since an election in April. The next step, choosing a prime minister, …

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Lebanon: ISIS, Israel have committed ‘war crimes’

 Foreign Affairs Minister Gebran Bassil Friday condemned Israel’s actions in Gaza, and ISIS’ against Iraq’s Christians, as “war crimes,” saying that the government has approved the ministry’s request to the ICC to launch probes into the recent events. For the first time in its diplomatic history, Lebanon sent requests to the International Criminal Court’s prosecutor to …

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Changing the demographic – Islamic radicals in Mosul grow roots

THE LEVANT EXCLUSIVE – Sources in Mosul have confirmed that ISIL – Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant – is working toward changing the region demographic by bringing families loyal to its ideology to Mosul, hoping to drawn residents’ opposition and seize complete control over all minds and bodies. …

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Mosul Christians flee before ISIL

THE LEVANT – The last Christian in Mosul, Iraq fled the city on July 19 at noon, according to reports. Hundreds of thousands of Christians evacuated weeks ago because of increasing violence at the hands of the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS), and thousands more left after the …

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ISIL to Christians – Convert to Islam or else

THE LEVANT EXCLUSIVE – In yet another move which has shocked Iraqis, Daash, aka ISIL (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant) has published a statement in which it warns Christians in the city of Mosul that if they do not convert to Islam they will face a harsh punishment. …

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Kurdistan builds trenches

Iraq’s Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) is fortifying the area under its control and establishing a coordination center for US military advisors in an effort to bolster the autonomous region’s defences. The autonomous region’s militia forces, known as Peshmerga, are digging a trench line along the edge of the territory under …

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Explosions in Iraqi capital

Government forces and allied Sunni tribal fighters battled to dislodge militants from a small town north of Baghdad on Monday, while two car bombs in the capital killed a reported 14 people, officials said. The clashes in Duluiyah are part of the Islamic State extremist group’s larger offensive across Iraq as it tries …

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Nuclear ISIS?

By Dr. Bryan R. Gibson for Islamist Gate –   In the aftermath the terrorist attacks against the United States in September 2001, President George W. Bush warned of the consequences of terrorist groups or rogue states of acquiring nuclear materials. At the time, top White House officials warned: “The problem here …

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The Blue Peace: Forging New Means of Cooperation

THE LEVANT EXCLUSIVE – by Dr Hasan Z. Sarikaya and Ms Safia Al Suhail – On a bright day in Geneva, June 2014, fifteen distinguished political leaders, parliamentarians, former ministers, senior government officials and water experts from Iraq and Turkey met under the auspices of the Blue Peace initiative. The …

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How Saudi Arabia helped ISIS take over the north of Iraq

Written by Patrick Cockburn – For The Independent – How far is Saudi Arabia complicit in the Isis takeover of much of northern Iraq, and is it stoking an escalating Sunni-Shia conflict across the Islamic world? Some time before 9/11, Prince Bandar bin Sultan, once the powerful Saudi ambassador in …

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Dozens of women killed in a mysterious attack in Baghdad

Armed men have killed 25 women and wounded at least eight people while storming two buildings in a residential Baghdad compound, Iraqi police and government sources say. The AFP news agency reported quoting the officials that the compound was being used for prostitution. “Twenty-five women were killed and eight people …

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The Telegraph: ISIS unveils ‘cabinet’ lineup

Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, the self-proclaimed leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS), has reportedly formed a cabinet to be in charge of his newly established “caliphate.” Documents published by The Telegraph newspaper this week revealed for the first time in details the structure of the group, which has claimed …

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Iraq compensates terror victims

The Iraqi government said Wednesday (July 9th) it has paid out 32 billion Iraqi dinars ($27 million) in compensations to terror victims, including 2,130 families who lost relatives or properties due to bombings and terrorist attacks. A series of measures were approved during a meeting in Milan late Monday of …

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Iraq warns UN ISIL gained access to chemical arms depot

Iraq’s government has lost control of a former chemical weapons facility to “armed terrorist groups” and is unable to fulfill its international obligations to destroy toxins kept there, the country’s UN envoy has informed the United Nations. In a letter to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, made public on Tuesday, Ambassador …

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