Iraq

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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 »

Iraq Launches Offensive Against ISIS' Longest-Held City

Civilians have been ordered to leave Fallujah

(Newser) - Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi announced the beginning of military operations to retake the ISIS-held city of Fallujah in a televised address on Sunday night. Iraqi forces are "approaching a moment of great victory" against ISIS, said al-Abadi, who was surrounded by top military commanders from the Ministry of... More »

American Killed in Combat in Iraq

Service member was advising Kurdish troops

(Newser) - An American service member has been killed in combat in Iraq, reports the AP . The unidentified person was advising Kurdish Peshmerga forces near Irbil and was reportedly killed by direct fire from ISIS a few miles back from the front lines. "It is a combat death," says defense... More »

Iraq Protesters Storm Green Zone

Al-Sadr followers pulled down walls, entered parliament

(Newser) - Hundreds of protesters climbed over the blast walls surrounding Baghdad's highly-fortified Green Zone for the first time on Saturday and stormed into parliament, carrying Iraqi flags and chanting against the government. The breach marked a major escalation in the country's political crisis following months of anti-government protests, sit-ins,... More »

Biden Makes Surprise Trip to Iraq

He's trying to shore up a shaky government

(Newser) - Vice President Joe Biden arrived in Baghdad on Thursday on a surprise visit intended to help Iraqi leaders resolve a political crisis that has hindered efforts to defeat the Islamic State. Biden landed at midday after an overnight flight from Washington. He was expected to meet with government officials and... More »

US Sending Choppers, 200 Troops to ISIS Fight

American troops will now be closer to the front lines

(Newser) - The US will deploy more than 200 additional troops to Iraq—upping the number from 3,870 to 4,087—and send Apache helicopters for the first time into the fight against ISIS in Iraq, the first major increase in US forces in nearly a year. The uptick in US... More »

17 Children Killed in Suicide Bombing at Soccer Tournament

At least 32 people total were killed during awards ceremony

(Newser) - At least 32 people were killed—more than half of them boys between the ages of 10 and 16—when a suicide bomber blew himself up at an amateur soccer tournament Friday in Iraq, AFP reports. Officials were handing out trophies to players following the tournament outside the town of... More »

Iraq Is Finally Trying to Reclaim City ISIS Took

'Operation Conquest' aims to grab Mosul back from militants

(Newser) - The Iraqi military, backed by US-led coalition aircraft, has launched a long-awaited operation to recapture the northern city of Mosul from ISIS, a military spokesman says. In the push, Iraqi forces retook several villages on the outskirts of the town of Makhmour, east of Mosul, early Thursday morning and hoisted... More »

Iraq Rocket Attack Kills US Service Member

Others wounded in strike on Makhmur base

(Newser) - An American service member was killed by a rocket attack on a base in northern Iraq on Saturday—13 years to the day after the Iraq war began in 2003. A US official tells CNN that the service member, who was on security duty at the Makhmur base, was killed... More »

Alleged American ISIS Fighter: I Followed a Girl

Mohamad Jamal Khweis says he made a 'bad decision'

(Newser) - The accused ISIS defector from Virginia says he made a "bad decision" and now regrets his actions. In an interview with K24 TV , Mohamad Jamal Khweis, 26, says he left the US in December, visited London and Amsterdam, then arrived in Turkey, where he met a woman from Mosul,... More »

Iraq's Shaky Dam Could Flood 1M in Hours

US Embassy warns Americans to have escape plan

(Newser) - Americans in Iraq should be poised to leave at any minute—but not because of any terrorist threat. In a security alert , the US Embassy in Baghdad notes more than a million people could be drowned or left homeless if Iraq's largest hydro-electric dam on the Tigris River breaks... More »

US Forces Nab 'Significant' ISIS Operative in Iraq

He's being interrogated

(Newser) - Now that US special forces are again operating on the ground in Iraq, an inevitable first has occurred: American troops have captured an operative of the Islamic State, reports CNN . Not much is known about the militant, though the New York Times describes him as a "significant" figure for... More »

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