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Freedom in the air

Iraq

Iraq appeals to US for more air power

Iraq yesterday appealed to visiting Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel for the United States to escalate its air war against the Islamic State group and to provide more powerful weapons. Iraqi PM Haider al-Abadi made the request at the start of discussions with Hagel, who insisted the outcome of the war was up to the Iraqis themselves. Hagel flew into Iraq from Kuwait, where US Lieutenant General James Terry on Monday told reporters that members of the anti-ISIS coalition meeting last week...

Australians banned from IS stronghold Raqqa

Australians banned from IS stronghold Raqqa

Australia has banned its citizens from travelling to the Syrian province of Raqqa, stronghold of the Islamic State (IS) militant group. Foreign Minister Julie Bishop for the first time used powers under terrorism laws to declare Raqqa a no-go zone. Anyone entering the area could face up to 10 years in prison unless they have...

Just bring them back from Iraq

Just bring them back from Iraq

In quest of a well-paid job, they left the country -- a son, a brother, father or husband to somebody here at home. But their lives are at risk in embattled Iraq. Now the least their relatives wish for is the safe return of their dear ones.   The family members of 50 overseas jobseekers...

Young, single Indian Muslim males barred from visiting Iraq

Young, single Indian Muslim males barred from visiting Iraq

Are you single, male, Muslim and under 30? If yes, then you should not apply for a pilgrimage visa to strife-torn Iraq. Alshaya Nasser Travels, one of the two Iraqi government-organized agencies (the other is Faiz-e-Hussaini) that facilitate visa processing, has asked tour operators not to accept passports from applicants who are single, under...

Iraq denies woman detained in Lebanon is IS leader's wife

Iraq denies woman detained in Lebanon is IS leader's wife

Iraq says a woman detained in Lebanon is not the wife of the Islamic State (IS) leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi. Lebanese officials said on Tuesday that the army had picked up a woman named Saja al-Dulaimi after she tried to enter from Syria with forged papers. But the Iraqi interior ministry said on Wednesday...

Iran bombs IS targets in Iraq, says Pentagon

Iran bombs IS targets in Iraq, says Pentagon

Iran has conducted air strikes against Islamic State targets in eastern Iraq during recent days, a Pentagon spokesman says. Rear Adm John Kirby said the US, which has conducted its own air strikes in Iraq, was not co-ordinating with Iran. A senior Iranian military official also dismissed talk of co-operation between the two countries. A US-led...

Families urge PM to return 180 stranded workers from Iraq

Families urge PM to return 180 stranded workers from Iraq

Families of the Bangladeshi workers stranded in Iraq for the last seven months today urged Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to bring back their dear ones before December 16. The 180 migrant workers have been suffering miserably in the Najaf city of Iraq without food, water and other amenities including power, the families alleged. The call...

Killings in the desert and the mirage of caliphate

THE name is now all too familiar, so are the violence and brutality associated with it. A caliphate, the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIS, has been proclaimed.  A caliph, with a suitable name borrowed from the first caliph of Islam, has proclaimed himself as head of the Islamic State.  The evocative name of Baghdad of the glorious days of Islam has been duly affixed to the title. The caliphate has not been coy about its own...

Car bombings in Baghdad kill 14

Car bombings in Baghdad kill 14

A pair of car bombs targeted busy commercial areas in the Iraqi capital on Monday, killing at least 14 people and wounding 31, officials said. In the first attack, a car detonated on a commercial street in the Meshtal neighborhood in eastern Baghdad, killing at least eight people and wounding 15, police officials said. The...

Yazidi girls seized by IS speak out after escape

Yazidi girls seized by IS speak out after escape

The 15-year-old girl, crying and terrified, refused to release her grip on her sister’s hand. Days earlier, Islamic State fighters had torn the girls from their family, and now were trying to split them up and distribute them as spoils of war, New York Time reports. The jihadist who had selected the 15-year-old as...

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