BAGHDAD, June 28 (Xinhua) -- A total of 25 security members were killed and some 22 others wounded in clashes between Iraqi forces and militants in south of the Iraqi capital of Baghdad on Saturday, a police source said.
Fierce clashes took place during the day near the towns of Jurf al-Sakhar, some 50 km south of Baghdad, and Mahmoudiyah, 30 km south of Baghdad, as well as the town of al-Rasheed, just south of Baghdad, between the security forces and Sunni militants, including those who are linked to the Islamic State in Iraq and Levant (ISIL), an al-Qaida offshoot, the source from Babil province, where the areas located, told Xinhua on condition of anonymity.
The battles also resulted in the killing and wounding of dozens of the militants.
The areas of the battles are part of a restive area, dubbed as Triangle of Death, which is a cluster of towns scattered north of Babil's provincial capital city of Hilla, some 100 km south of Baghdad.
Iraq has been witnessing its worst security conditions that began more than two weeks ago when armed Sunni insurgents, spearheaded by the al-Qaida splinter group ISIL, launched a surprise offensive that led to the debacle of Iraqi security forces, and the fallen of a large part of the country's northern and western territories.
WASHINGTON, June 27 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Barack Obama on Friday downplayed the threat posed by Islamic militants making lightening advances in Iraq, saying the United States has been under "serious threat" during his entire presidency.
In an interview with ABC's "Good Morning America" program, the president was asked about the threat by the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), as his former ambassador to Iraq Ryan Crocker had described the splinter group of al-Qaida as one that " will be coming our way" with 2,000 fighters holding Western passports. Full story
BAGHDAD, June 26 (Xinhua) -- Iraqi Prime Minister Nuri al- Maliki said Thursday that the political track is necessary to go with the military track in fighting against the blitzkrieg of the Sunni extremist groups.
"There have to be two parallel tracks to proceed: the first is the work on the ground and military operations against the terrorists, and the second is to follow up the political process and holding the meeting of the Council of Representatives ( Parliament) on time," Maliki told British Foreign Secretary William Hague during their meeting in the capital Baghdad, according to a statement issued by Maliki's office. Full story