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Iraqi PM renounces British citizenship by law
2014.09.15 02:11:07

Iraq's new Prime Minister Haider al-Abaddi has renounced his British citizenship since assuming office last week, three government officials close to the prime minister said on Sunday.

According to the officials, who declined to be named because they are not authorized to discuss the matter, al-Abadi surrendered his British passport after his government was officially approved by parliament on Sept. 8.

Iraq's constitution stipulates that an Iraqi citizen may hold multiple passports. However, anyone who assumes a senior security or government position must abandon any other acquired citizenship.

Al-Abadi moved to the United Kingdom in the late 1970s, where he pursued a PhD at the University of Manchester. He later went on to become the Britain-based spokesman for his Islamic Dawa Party, and would spend more than 20 years in exile in the UK before returning to Iraq following the 2003 U.S.-led invasion that toppled Saddam Hussein. [AP]



Tags: Iraq | Haider al-Abbadi

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A convoy of more than 200 white trucks returned to Russia
2014.09.15 01:28:23

A convoy of more than 200 white trucks returned to Russia on Saturday after delivering humanitarian aid to the battered Ukrainian city of Luhansk, a move made without Kiev's consent yet met with silence by Ukraine's top leaders.

[AP]



Tags: Ukraine | Russia

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The murder of David Haines
2014.09.15 01:14:12

The Islamic State group claims to have killed a hostage it had been holding since 2013. UK Prime Minister David Cameron called the murder of David Haines, a humanitarian aid worker, an act of pure evil.

Read our full report here.



Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United Kingdom | David Haines

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Berlin to send around 40 soldiers to northern Iraq
2014.09.14 03:33:19

Berlin is preparing to send around 40 soldiers to northern Iraq to train Kurdish fighters battling against militants from the Islamic State, the German army said on Saturday.

Berlin's defense ministry said it had sent six soldiers to its consulate in Arbil, northern Iraq, to "coordinate" joint training exercises.

Additional teams will be "temporarily" deployed to Iraqi Kurdistan, with up to 30 Kurdish soldiers traveling to Germany in exchange, it said.

The first batch of German weapons, which includes "anti-tank rockets and machine guns," will arrive in northern Iraq on September 24 and will be followed "quickly" by the military trainers, according to a defense ministry spokesman.

[AFP]



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | Germany

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Mahdi Army
2014.09.14 03:31:44

Fighters from Shiite group Mahdi Army and an Iraqi army unit say they have pushed back Islamic State fighters from the village of Albouhassan in Amerli region in Salahuddin province.

[Reuters]



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State

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Air strikes on Islamic State should not kill civilians
2014.09.14 03:30:43

Salim Al-Jaboury said on Saturday that the only condition mentioned for using air strikes was for it to be precise and to target positions of terrorists and ISIS which have been proven with absolute certainty that it is ISIS or terrorists.

"As for air strikes that are random, which will target citizens, this is something that we reject, naturally, and we do not consider that is a constructive military strategy because it is the innocent who will pay the price and as such we will lose many souls and their hatred will increase.''

He also pointed this out while speaking to US Secretary of State John Kerry expressing that air strikes on Islamic State should not kill civilians, the speaker told Reuters News Agency in an interview.

[Reuters]



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | United States

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On the pretext of fighting terrorism
2014.09.14 03:21:17

The secretary of Iran's Supreme National Security Council accused the United States on Saturday of violating the sovereignty of nations on the "pretext of fighting terrorism" in Iraq and Syria.

"On the pretext of fighting terrorism, the United States want to pursue their unilateral policies and violate the sovereignty of states," Ali Shamkhani said, quoted by the official IRNA news agency.

On the other hand, the speaker of parliament, Ali Larijani, warned the US that launching strikes against Iran's ally Syria as part of its campaign against the fighters of the Islamic State group would be "playing with fire".

[AFP]



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | United States | Syria | Iran

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Syrian troops pound central village amid offensive
2014.09.14 03:06:36

Syrian jets and helicopter gunships have reportedly struck several targets in war-torn Hama in what appears to be preparations for a ground offensive on the rebel stronghold.

The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights, said Syrian fighter jets conducted at least eight airstrikes on the town of Kfar Zeita in Hama province. It had no word on casualties.

A Hama-based activist who goes by the name of Yazan Shahdawi said that by the afternoon there had been about 20 strikes, as well as artillery shelling.

Saturday's bombardment of the central town came two days after government forces captured the nearby town of Halfaya.

[Associated Press]



Tags: Syria

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Kerry held talks in Egypt
2014.09.14 03:04:50

Secretary of State John Kerry held talks in Egypt on Saturday on the latest leg of a regional tour aimed at forging a coalition for a US-led war on jihadists in Iraq and Syria.

Egypt's formidable army is unlikely to take part in military action against the Islamic State fighters, but it has closely cooperated with the United States on counter-terrorism.

[AFP]



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | United States | Syria | John Kerry | Egypt

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Gunmen kidnap Lebanese civilian near Syria border
2014.09.14 02:50:51

Gunmen have kidnapped a Lebanese civilian in Arsal, a month after jihadists from Syria clashed with the Lebanese army in the restive border town, a security source said.

The abduction comes weeks after another civilian was kidnapped and later killed by jihadists, who accused him of "collaborating" with Hezbollah, which has deployed thousands of troops in Syria alongside President Bashar al-Assad's troops.

The clashes and kidnappings in Arsal have sent tensions in Lebanon soaring, with a series of tit-for-tat cases of hostage-taking occurring last week in the eastern Bekaa valley.

[AFP]



Tags: Syria | Lebanon

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Iraq PM orders halt to shelling of civilian areas
2014.09.14 02:49:49

Iraq's prime minister has ordered the army to stop shelling populated areas held by Islamic State (IS) fighters in order to spare the lives of "innocent victims" as the armed forces struggle to retake cities and towns seized by the Islamic State extremist group this summer.

"I issued this order two days ago because we do not want to see more innocent victims falling in the places and provinces controlled by Daesh," Haider al-Abbadi told a news conference in Baghdad on Saturday, referring to the Islamic State group by its Arabic acronym.

He accused IS of using civilians as a human shield to stop the advance of Iraqi security forces. But he vowed to continue military operations against the al-Qaeda breakaway group, which seized large territories in the north and west in an unprecedented June offensive.

"We will continue to chase them (IS fighters) and we know that they are hiding behind the civilians," he added.

[Associated Press]



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State

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Kerry says #Iran has no place
2014.09.14 02:37:56

US Secretary of State John Kerry says Iran has no place in its coalition to fight the Islamic State group, a day after Barack Obama said the US would strike the fighters in Syria.

Read our full report here.



Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United States | John Kerry | Iran

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US House of Representatives
2014.09.14 02:36:02

The Republican leader of the US House of Representatives on Friday promised Iraq's prime minister that the House will provide the new government in Baghdad the assistance necessary U.S. to defeat Islamic fighters

[AP]



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | United States

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The family of journalist, James Foley
2014.09.14 02:28:33

The family of journalist, James Foley, who was murdered by the Islamic State group say US authorities threatened them with terror charges if they paid a ransom to his kidnappers to secure his release.

Read more here.



Tags: Syria | Islamic State | United States | James Foley

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US action in Iraq
2014.09.14 02:25:47

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Friday US action in Iraq, where Islamic State fighters have seized swathes of territory, was necessary but would not be enough on its own to bring about political stability.



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | United States | Turkey

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Two bombs went off in Baghdad's districts of Karrada
2014.09.13 03:29:05

14 people were killed and injured on Friday when two bombs went off in Baghdad's districts of Karrada and Zafaraniya.

Meanwhile Haider Abadi , general commander of the Iraqi armed forces, announced the arrest of a criminal network responsible for the recent bombing in the capital and a number of provinces, stressing on activating the intelligence to eliminate terrorism.



Tags: Iraq

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General John Allen to coordinate international efforts to fight Islamic State
2014.09.13 03:07:23

President Barack Obama has chosen retired Marine Corps General John Allen, who served as the top U.S. commander in Afghanistan, to coordinate international efforts to fight Islamic State militants in Iraq and Syria, a US official said on Friday.

The official said he would be named as the Special Presidential Envoy for the Global Coalition against ISIL, the acronym the administration used for the Sunni Islamist movement.



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | United States | Barack Obama | Syria

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France has delivered four arms shipments to Iraq
2014.09.13 03:05:41

President Hollande said that France has delivered four arms shipments and 66 tons of humanitarian aid to Iraq.



Tags: Iraq | France

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Fighters who fought with rebel groups returned to France
2014.09.13 02:50:59

Around 100 fighters who fought with rebel groups in Syria and Iraq have returned to France, requiring "massive" resources for surveillance and other security measures to prevent attacks, a French lawmaker said on Friday.

Some of them are in jail, others are under judicial surveillance, we have material evidence showing that a number of those who have returned from Syria could potentially have gone ahead to commit attacks."

-Socialist lawmaker Sebastien Pietrasanta



Tags: Iraq | Islamic State | Syria | France

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Valerie Amos arrived in Erbil
2014.09.13 02:48:50

Valerie Amos, Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief Coordinator, arrived in Erbil on a Four day visit to discuss the situation of Iraqi displaced people.



Tags: Iraq

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