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ISIS 'Massacring Mosul Residents'

UN fears group is killing its 'human shields'

(Newser) - As Iraqi forces close in on Mosul, ISIS appears to be stepping up its atrocities in the city. A senior intelligence source tells CNN that the group rounded up and killed 284 men and boys in southern Mosul on Thursday and Friday. The victims, including children, are believed to be... More »

Inside the Battle for Mosul

ISIS putting up fierce resistance in operation's first week

(Newser) - Iraq and Kurdish forces backed by a US-led coalition have begun what could be a long fight to recapture the city of Mosul from the Islamic State; it's the group's last major stronghold in the country. Related coverage on the fight and why it matters:
  • "Blood stained
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'God Willing, We Will Take This Town Today'

Elite Iraqi forces advance on town of Bartella, which is near Mosul

(Newser) - Iraqi special forces charged into the Mosul battle Thursday with a pre-dawn advance on a nearby town held by ISIS, a key part of a multi-pronged assault on eastern approaches to the besieged city. As they advanced, attack helicopters fired on the militants and heavy gunfire echoed across the plains,... More »

This May Be 2016's Biggest Humanitarian Challenge

Some 1M civilians could flee Mosul, with 700K of them requiring shelter

(Newser) - The military operation to wrest Mosul from ISIS could become the single largest, most complex humanitarian operation in the world in 2016, a UN official said Monday. Lise Grande, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Iraq, said that in the worst case scenario, some 1 million civilians could flee the city,... More »

It Begins: 'Final Battle' for Biggest ISIS City

More than 35K troops launch push to retake Mosul

(Newser) - Iraq has launched what a military spokesman says is no less than a battle for the country's future: An operation to retake Mosul, once the country's second-largest city, from ISIS, which seized it more than two years ago, has begun. The US-led coalition is supporting Iraqi troops and... More »

The Pentagon Is Worried About ISIS' New Weapon

Off-the-shelf drones are being turned into bombs

(Newser) - In a development that some security experts say the Pentagon should have seen coming, ISIS is now using drones to kill people on the battlefield. The Guardian reports that according to French media, two Kurdish peshmerga fighters were killed and two French special forces soldiers were badly injured in Iraq... More »

Iraq Hangs Dozens of ISIS Fighters Over Gruesome Massacre

36 were convicted in slaughter of hundreds of soldiers in 2014

(Newser) - Iraq has executed 36 men convicted of taking part in the Islamic State group's massacre of hundreds of soldiers in 2014, according to Iraqi officials. The men were hanged at the Nasiriyah prison in southern Iraq on Sunday, according to provincial Gov. Yahya al-Nasiri. A Justice Ministry official, who... More »

It Took a Year to Conceive. Fire Killed Her Newborn, 11 More

Fire ripped through maternity ward at a Baghdad hospital Tuesday night

(Newser) - Shaima Hassan stood dazed and trembling in shock after losing her two-day-old son. The 36-year old had spent more than a year visiting hospitals in and outside Iraq trying to conceive. "I waited for ages to have this baby and when I finally had him, it took only a... More »

2 Years of Airstrikes Take Heavy Toll on Iraq

ISIS in retreat, but cities are devastated

(Newser) - Two years ago , just after the fall of Mosul, the US-led coalition launched the first airstrikes on ISIS, ushering in a deeper phase of intervention that dramatically changed the fight against the militant group in Iraq. Since then, more than 9,400 airstrikes have allowed Iraqi forces to claw... More »

ISIS Reportedly Captures 3K Fleeing Iraqis

Several may have already been killed: UNHCR

(Newser) - The UN refugee agency says it has received reports that the Islamic State may have captured up to 3,000 Iraqis who were fleeing violence and that 12 of them may have been killed, reports AP . In a report published Thursday, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees said the internally... More »

FBI Chief: a 'Terrorist Diaspora' Is Coming

Defeat of ISIS in Syria will bring new challenges: Comey

(Newser) - Don't expect terror attacks to end with the Islamic State's defeat in Iraq and Syria. Though that defeat is on the horizon, "through the fingers of that crush are going to come hundreds of really dangerous people and they are going to flow primarily to Western Europe"... More »

Iraq's 'Garden of Eden' Added to Prestigious List

Wetlands of southern Iraq are one of 12 new UNESCO world heritage sites

(Newser) - Fed by the Tigris and Euphrates rivers, vast and remote wetlands along the border with Iran in southern Iraq that are considered to be the biblical "Garden of Eden" have just been named a UNESCO world heritage site, the United Nations reports. Among the 12 new sites added to... More »

ISIS Boasts About Killings, Braces for Collapse

Group vows to fight on even if every scrap of territory is lost

(Newser) - ISIS, which measures success in the number of people its followers kill in bloody atrocities around the world, says it had a very successful Ramadan. In the latest issue of its al-Naba magazine, the group boasts that it killed or injured 5,200 people in 14 "military operations" during... More »

US Sending 560 More Troops to Iraq

And getting ready to take Mosul back from ISIS

(Newser) - The US will send 560 more troops to Iraq to help recapture Mosul from Islamic State militants, Defense Secretary Ash Carter said Monday on an unannounced visit to the country. Most of the new troops will be devoted to the buildup of the newly retaken Qayara air base, about 40... More »

ISIS Developing Scary New 'Signature'

'Wolf packs' emerge even as group suffers military setbacks

(Newser) - The Islamic State is gloating after a series of attacks claimed in its name, including those in Bangladesh , Iraq , Turkey , and Saudi Arabia . Some related coverage:
  • As ISIS suffers military setbacks within its self-declared borders, it seems to be shifting toward more guerrilla-type operations. USA Today takes a look.
  • "
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ISIS Is Using Facebook to Sell Sex Slaves

Escape from captivity is growing more difficult

(Newser) - The advertisement on the Telegram app is as chilling as it is incongruous: A girl for sale is "Virgin. Beautiful. 12 years old … Her price has reached $12,500 and she will be sold soon." The posting in Arabic appeared on an encrypted conversation along with ads... More »

Fury in Baghdad as Bomb Toll Hits 142

Mob hurls rocks, shoes at PM's convoy

(Newser) - Iraqi authorities on Monday raised the death toll to 142 from Sunday's devastating truck bombing at a bustling Baghdad commercial street as Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi ordered new security measures. The bombing, claimed by ISIS, was the deadliest terror attack in Iraq in a year and one of the... More »

Earliest Pay Stub Shows Workers Were Paid in Beer

5K-year-old tablet found in Mesopotamian city of Uruk

(Newser) - Rather be paid in beer than money? You might've enjoyed life in Mesopotamia. Scientists have discovered one of the earliest examples of writing in the form of "the world's oldest known payslip." Dating to around 3300 BC, the clay tablet found in the Mesopotamian city of... More »

ISIS Defenses Collapse in Fallujah

Thousands of civilians flee to safety

(Newser) - Iraqi special forces swept into Fallujah on Friday, recapturing most of the city as ISIS' grip crumbled after weeks of fighting. Thousands of trapped residents took advantage of the militants' retreat to flee, some swimming across the Euphrates River to safety, the AP reports. Residents described harrowing escapes even after... More »

Iraq Launches Final Assault on Fallujah

50K civilians caught between ISIS, Iraqi military

(Newser) - Monday is going to be another bloody day in Fallujah—possibly the bloodiest yet. Before dawn, the Iraqi military launched a final offensive to recapture the city from ISIS, which has held it for more than two years. "With God's blessing we have launched the third phase of... More »

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