ANKARA, June 19 (Xinhua) -- The Iraqi government should take firm actions against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant ( ISIL), which has rapidly spread across northern Iraq, the country' s fugitive Sunni Vice President Tariq al-Hashimi said in Istanbul on Thursday, according to local Daily News reports.
"The main reason behind the uprising is primarily the injustice, marginalization and oppression of al-Maliki against the Arab Sunnis," al-Hashimi said, blaming Prime Minister Nuri al-Maliki for the current violence on Arab Sunnis in Iraq.
"Even the international community has turned blind eye to their tragedy and has done nothing but watch the ongoing aggression of Prime Minister al-Maliki against al-Anbar province for five months, " al-Hashimi said, urging for firm actions against ISIL.
The former Iraqi vice president was convicted of organizing murders by Baghdad's criminal court in 2012. But Turkey has given asylum to him despite the protest from the Iraqi government.
On Wednesday Iraq's security forces continued fierce clashes with ISIL militant groups, as the troops repelled an attack on a major oil refinery in Salahudin province.
The security deterioration in Iraq started last Tuesday after bloody clashes broke out between the Iraqi security forces and hundreds of Sunni militants. The latter has already taken control of Iraq's second largest city Mosul and swathes of other territories after the security forces withdrew from their posts in Nineveh and other predominantly Sunni provinces.