29 June 2017
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The Washington Times - Iraq’s former prime minister is playing a critical, backroom role in undermining the Obama administration’s push for a more inclusive government in Baghdad, U.S. and Iraqi officials say, warning that Shiite hard-liner Nouri al-Maliki is still pulling the strings behind the scenes in a bid to return to power in the years ahead. The White House and State Department have put their weight behind Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi, seen as a more moderate Shiite politician compared…
London and Amman, Asharq Al-Awsat—Iraq’s government continues to sideline confessional and ethnic minorities in the country, according to a senior Iraqi official. Speaking to Asharq Al-Awsat on Saturday, the official, who heads a prominent political bloc in the country, said the current government of Prime Minister Haider Al-Abadi continued to discriminate against Sunnis and Kurds in the country. “We were expecting things to change under the leadership of Haider Al-Abadi, but unfortunately he is following the same policies of his…
Anbar, Asharq Al-Awsat—Iraq’s Sunni tribal leaders have reacted cautiously to the US President Barack Obama’s decision to deploy additional troops to confront the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria (ISIS,) with some casting doubt over the effectiveness of the step.The White House on Wednesday authorized deployment of up to 450 troops to assist beleaguered Iraqi forces trying to recapture the city of Ramadi, the provincial capital of Anbar, that fell to the Islamist group last month. US troops will do…
Reuters - Seventeen people were killed in Iraq on Monday in clashes between Islamic State militants and pro-government forces in a town close to the country's biggest refinery, a focal point in efforts to counter the ultra-hardline Sunni group. The refinery beside the town of Baiji has changed hands before, reflecting the Iraqi army's struggle to hold territory it recaptures after months of clashes. Fighting on Monday took place on a road used by Islamic State for supply lines leading from…
The White House formally unveiled plans to send hundreds of new U.S. troops to the country amid criticism over its approach WASHINGTON, The Wall Street Journal —The White House, under pressure to fortify President Barack Obama’s war policy in Iraq, formally unveiled plans to send hundreds of new U.S. troops to the country, but its choice of a relatively conservative military option didn’t quell criticism over its approach. The White House said that in the coming weeks, the Pentagon would…
Reuters - The United States is considering replicating the creation of a new U.S. military hub in Anbar elsewhere in Iraq as the campaign against Islamic State advances, the top U.S. military officer said on Thursday. "It's another one of the options that we're considering," General Martin Dempsey, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a small group of reporters before landing in Naples, Italy, acknowledging that might require more troops. Dempsey said examination of such a possibility was…
The Washington Times - A top Iraqi Sunni politician said Monday his nation’s parliament is close to voting on legislation to create a National Guard to formalize the role of Sunni tribal militias in the fight against the Islamic State — an initiative the Obama administration has been pushing for nearly a year. While administration officials touted the National Guard law last fall as the best way to create a “Sunni Awakening 2.0” in Iraq, the initiative has faced resistance…
Usama al-Nujayfi says central government 'politically targeting' Sunni community Baghdad, Anadolu Agency - Sunnis do not trust Iraq’s central government, the country’s deputy president has claimed. Usama al-Nujayfi – a prominent Sunni – made the claim on Tuesday, which coincides with the first anniversary of the fall of the northern province of Mosul to Daesh in 2014. “Sunnis do not trust the government led by the Shia,” Nujayfi said. “Baghdad still continues its policy of politically targeting Sunnis.” Iraq is…
UN News Centre - Millions of people are in need of a greater assistance across Iraq, said Stephen O’Brien, the new Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, following a two-day visit to the strife-torn country. “It’s imperative at this critical time we do more to mitigate the suffering of the Iraqi people. Much has been done, but the needs continue to increase and more is needed,” stated Mr. O’Brien, who assumed his post as UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs and Emergency Relief…
France24 - The Iraqi Shiite militia known as the Imam Ali Brigades is accused of having committed multiple war crimes in the fight against the Islamic State organisation in Iraq, including summary executions and torture of captives. But its brutality isn’t the only thing fuelling the militia's notoriety – it also has a well-oiled communications strategy. In June 2014, Shiite leader Ayatollah Sistani made an appeal for mobilisation against the Islamic State organisation. Numerous Iraqi Shiite militias were formed after…

US 'sending hundreds more troops to Iraq' Wednesday, 10 June 2015 10:58

Barack Obama reportedly poised to send 500 extra military personnel to fight Islamic State and set up new training base in Anbar province The Telegraph - The White House is reportedly planning a shift in strategy in Iraq that would see hundreds of American military trainers deployed to help retake Ramadi and the delay of long-held plans to drive the Islamic State from Mosul. Six months after US forces began training Iraqi troops to take on the jihadist fighters, a…

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