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Sunni insurgents

Iraqi Kurdish president asks parliament to prepare for independence vote

ARBIL: The president of Iraq's autonomous Kurdish region asked its parliament on Thursday to plan a referendum on Kurdish independence, signaling his impatience with Baghdad, which is fighting to repel Sunni insurgents and struggling to form a new government. The United States has urged the Kurds to stand with Baghdad as Iraq faces an onslaught by Sunni Muslim militants led by an al Qaeda offshoot who have seized large parts of the north and west and are threatening to march on the capital. Iraq’s 5 million Kurds, who have…

Sunni insurgents close in on Iraq’s biggest oil refinery

TIKRIT: Sunni insurgents from an al Qaeda splinter group extended their control from the northern city of Mosul on Wednesday to an area further south that includes Iraq's biggest oil refinery in a devastating show of strength against the Shi'ite-led government. Security sources said militants from the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) - Sunni militants waging sectarian war on both sides of the Iraqi-Syrian frontier - drove into the town of Baiji late on Tuesday in armed vehicles, torching the court house and…

Gunmen occupy Iraqi university campus, take students hostage

RAMADI: Gunmen occupied a university in Iraq's western province of Anbar on Saturday, taking hundreds of students and their professors hostage inside the campus, security sources said. After fighting their way past the guards, the militants managed to break into Anbar University in the provincial capital Ramadi overnight and planted bombs behind them to prevent security forces from advancing. Security forces surrounded the university and exchanged fire with militants patrolling the rooftops with sniper rifles. Sources in…