Iraq

Iraq special forces advance in Tikrit, U.S. coalition joins fight

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BAGHDAD - Iraqi special forces advanced on central Tikrit on Thursday as U.S.-led coalition planes joined the largest offensive yet against Islamic State militants holding out in Saddam Hussein's home city. | Video

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U.S. ruled out Shi'ite militias before joining Tikrit strikes - U.S. general 12:26pm GMT

WASHINGTON - The United States conditioned its entry into Iraq's battle to retake Tikrit from Islamic State on the withdrawal of Iran-backed Shi'ite militias from the clearing operation, and they are no longer there, a senior U.S. general told Congress on Thursday.

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Iraq special forces advance in Tikrit, U.S. coalition joins fight 26 Mar 2015

BAGHDAD - Iraqi special forces advanced on central Tikrit on Thursday as U.S.-led coalition planes joined the largest offensive yet against Islamic State militants holding out in Saddam Hussein's home city. | Video

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U.S. ruled out Shi'ite militias before joining Tikrit strikes - U.S. general 26 Mar 2015

WASHINGTON - The United States conditioned its entry into Iraq's battle to retake Tikrit from Islamic State on the withdrawal of Iran-backed Shi'ite militias from the clearing operation, and they are no longer there, a senior U.S. general told Congress on Thursday.

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Asylum seekers in the West highest since Bosnia war - UNHCR 26 Mar 2015

GENEVA - Wars in Syria and Iraq drove the number of people requesting asylum in industrialised countries to a 22-year high last year, the United Nations said on Thursday, appealing for Western nations to open their doors to more refugees.

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U.S.-led coalition, Iraqis pound Islamic State in Tikrit 26 Mar 2015

BAGHDAD/WASHINGTON - U.S.-led coalition warplanes launched their first airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Tikrit on Wednesday, officials said, coming off the sidelines to aid Iraqi forces fighting alongside Iran-backed Shi'ite militia on the ground.

U.S.-led coalition, Iraqis pound Islamic State in Tikrit 25 Mar 2015

BAGHDAD/WASHINGTON - U.S.-led coalition warplanes launched their first airstrikes against Islamic State targets in Tikrit on Wednesday, officials said, coming off the sidelines to aid Iraqi forces fighting alongside Iran-backed Shi'ite militia on the ground.

U.S.-led coalition, Iraqis pound Islamic State in Tikrit 25 Mar 2015

BAGHDAD/WASHINGTON - U.S.-led coalition aircraft launched strikes against Islamic State targets in Tikrit on Wednesday, officials said, coming off the sidelines to support Iraqi forces battling alongside Iran-backed Shi'ite militia as they resumed their stalled offensive.

Three men arrested for recruiting Islamist fighters in Italy 25 Mar 2015

MILAN - Police arrested three men on Wednesday for allegedly setting up a network in Italy to recruit Islamist fighters to be sent to Syria and Iraq, the Italian authorities said.

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Syria's Assad urges united front with Iraq against terrorism - state media 25 Mar 2015

(THis version of the March 24 story corrects the reference to Syria's Arab League seat in paragraphs 10-11)