Latest Iraq news

  • US-led raids 'destroy IS bridges' on Syria-Iraq border
    US-led raids 'destroy IS bridges' on Syria-Iraq border 2 hours 38 minutes ago

    US-led coalition air strikes destroyed early Friday two key bridges used by the Islamic State group on the Syrian side of the Iraqi border, a monitoring group said. More »

  • Early poll prospects grow as Turkish air strikes muddy coalition talks
    Early poll prospects grow as Turkish air strikes muddy coalition talks 3 hours ago

    By Orhan Coskun and Ercan Gurses ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkey looks increasingly likely to face an early election as its air strikes against Kurdish militants in Iraq and Islamic State in Syria stir nationalist sentiment and coalition talks make little apparent progress. The NATO member launched near-simultaneous bombing campaigns in Iraq and Syria a week ago, opening up conflict on two fronts as the ruling AK Party tries to find a junior coalition partner after losing its majority in a June election. The military action against Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) camps in northern Iraq has cheered the national opposition MHP, long opposed to a peace process with the Kurdish militants, raising the possibility it could support a short-lived minority AKP government if it took the country to a new election. More »

  • Turkey says Iraq's negative attitude towards air strikes on PKK 'di …
    Turkey says Iraq's negative attitude towards air strikes on PKK 'di … 3 hours ago

    ISTANBUL (Reuters) - The Turkish foreign ministry said on Friday that the Iraqi government's "negative attitude" towards Turkey's air strikes on Kurdish militant camps in northern Iraq was disappointing and difficult to accept. "It is obvious that many armed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants have been sheltering inside Iraqi territory for years," the foreign ministry said in statement. "It is not possible to accept or understand the opposing attitude of those who can't control their border," it said. (Reporting by Humeyra Pamuk; Editing by Nick Tattersall) More »

  • 'PKK attack' kills two police in tense Turkey
    'PKK attack' kills two police in tense Turkey 4 hours ago

    Two more Turkish police were killed Friday in an attack blamed on Kurdish militants as tensions in the country boiled over amid the military's cross-border bombing campaign against extremists in Syria and Iraq. More »

  • U.S., allies conduct 22 air strikes in Iraq against Islamic State - U.S. mi … 21 hours ago

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - An international coalition led by the United States targeted Islamic State militants in Iraq with 22 air strikes on Wednesday, the U.S. military said on Thursday. The attacks were concentrated near Haditha, where eight strikes hit an Islamic State tactical unit, five staging areas, a command-and-control site and also destroyed Islamic State vehicles, structures, and mortar systems, according to a statement from the Combined Joint Task Force. The coalition also targeted the militant group with strikes near Kirkuk, Makhmur, Mosul, Ramadi, Sinjar and Tal Afar. ... More »

  • IMF approves $1.24 bn Iraq emergency lifeline
    IMF approves $1.24 bn Iraq emergency lifeline 22 hours ago

    Iraqis shop in Baghdad's historic Saray Bazaar on June 2, 2015 More »

  • In Iraq bastions, PKK braces for new war with Turkey
    In Iraq bastions, PKK braces for new war with Turkey 22 hours ago

    Pointing to a crater left by one of scores of Turkish air strikes in Iraq's Kurdistan region, a PKK rebel official said that "Turkey has declared war against us". More »

  • Erdogan taking Turkey to war to avenge Kurdish gains - opposition
    Erdogan taking Turkey to war to avenge Kurdish gains - opposition 23 hours ago

    By Gulsen Solaker and Ece Toksabay ANKARA (Reuters) - The leader of Turkey's pro-Kurdish opposition accused President Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday of launching air strikes in Syria and Iraq to prevent Kurdish territorial and political gains, and of using the war against Islamic State as a cover. Turkey launched near-simultaneous air strikes on Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) camps in northern Iraq and Islamic State fighters in Syria last Friday, in what Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has called a "synchronised fight against terror". More »

  • Iraqi government denies UN torture allegations
    Iraqi government denies UN torture allegations Thu, Jul 30, 2015

    UN committee criticises Iraq for failing to prosecute rights abuses and lack of adequate legal definition of torture. More »

  • Kuwait says uncovers Islamic State network Thu, Jul 30, 2015

    Kuwait has uncovered a network of Islamic State militants who fought in Iraq and Syria and detained some of its members, the interior ministry said on Thursday, a month after the group carried out the Gulf state's deadliest militant attack. The network included five Kuwaitis, a ministry statement carried by the official KUNA state news agency said. The statement said without elaborating that one of the five had been killed in "a terrorist operation" in Iraq. More »

  • Kuwait identifies cell of IS militants active in Iraq, Syria Thu, Jul 30, 2015

    KUWAIT CITY (AP) — Kuwaiti authorities say they have uncovered a cell of Islamic State militants from the small Gulf nation involved in fighting in Iraq and Syria. More »

  • Turkey's 'risky' two-front war: political opportunity for Erdog … Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    Turkey’s abrupt shift to a two-front war against Islamic State militants and Kurdish separatists has plunged the country into a period of uncertainty, exacerbating political turmoil at home while raising fears of violent domestic unrest. The past 24 hours have seen Turkey dramatically escalate its military campaign against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), with fighter jets pounding PKK positions in northern Iraq and in Turkey’s Kurdish heartland. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan effectively declared the three-year-old peace process with the PKK over, and suggested that Kurdish lawmakers might face legal action for alleged links to terrorism. More »

  • Turkey pounds PKK, allows US to use base against IS
    Turkey pounds PKK, allows US to use base against IS Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    Turkish warplanes on Wednesday pounded targets of PKK rebels in northern Iraq in a new wave of strikes in its campaign against militant groups, as Ankara allowed the United States to use one of its bases to carry out air raids on jihadists. More »

  • U.S., allies target Islamic State in Syria, Iraq with 14 air strikes - U.S. … Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    The United States and its allies conducted 11 air strikes in Iraq on Tuesday against the Islamic State and also targeted the militant group with three strikes in Syria, the U.S. military said. Strikes in Iraq were scattered throughout the country, with three hitting tactical units and destroying an armoured vehicle, structure and fighting position near Ramadi, according to a statement released by the Joint Coalition Task Force on Wednesday. Two of the strikes in Syria were near Al Hasakah, hitting an Islamic State tactical unit and destroying two fighting positions, the statement said. More »

  • Suicide attacks in Anbar kill at least 18 Iraqi troops Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    BAGHDAD (AP) — Militants in Iraq used stolen Humvees loaded with explosives to unleash a series of suicide car bombings targeting Iraqi security forces on Wednesday, killing at least 18 Iraqi troops, officials said. More »

  • Q&A: Kurds fight Islamic State and endure Turkish attacks
    Q&A: Kurds fight Islamic State and endure Turkish attacks Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    BAGHDAD (AP) — U.S. and Turkish plans to create an "Islamic State-free zone" in Syria along the Turkish border could escalate the conflict between Turkey and Kurdish fighters in Syria and Iraq. More »

  • Turkish gov't not ready to restart peace talks with Kurds
    Turkish gov't not ready to restart peace talks with Kurds Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    ANKARA, Turkey (AP) — Turkish jets hit Kurdish rebel targets in northern Iraq overnight and the government said strikes would continue until the rebels lay down their arms, despite calls Wednesday by the pro-Kurdish opposition for an immediate end to the violence and the resumption of peace efforts. More »

  • Flaws Found In Isolation Of Terror Inmates
    Flaws Found In Isolation Of Terror Inmates Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    In this case Kamel Bourgass - the only person to be convicted of the notorious ricin poison plot, once used by US Secretary of State Colin Powell to justify the invasion of Iraq but later discredited - is a particularly unattractive victim. Bourgass and another prisoner Tanvir Hussain - who was convicted of the liquid bomb plot - were set to become the latest hate figures for the anti-Human Rights Act lobby, when they argued in the Supreme Court that being kept in solitary confinement in prison for periods of up to seven months, was a breach of their human rights. But in fact the judgement from the Supreme Court has much more to offer than proving whether, as many have alleged, the Human Rights Act is, or is not, a "villain's charter". More »

  • U.N. panel questions Iraq over use of torture Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    By Tom Miles GENEVA (Reuters) - Iraqi officials were challenged on Wednesday to name a single person the country had jailed for torture by a U.N. committee investigating suspected human rights abuses in a justice system that had "gone astray". "Is there anyone in Iraq in prison, sentenced for torturing another human being? Ten?" the chairman of the U.N. Committee against Torture Claudio Grossman asked the Iraqi delegation. More »

  • Turkey launches heaviest air strikes yet on Kurdish group
    Turkey launches heaviest air strikes yet on Kurdish group Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    By Humeyra Pamuk and Nick Tattersall ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkish jets launched their heaviest assault on Kurdish militants in northern Iraq overnight since air strikes began last week, hours after President Tayyip Erdogan said a peace process had become impossible. The strikes hit Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) targets including shelters, depots and caves in six areas, a statement from Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu's office said. Iraq condemned the air strikes as a "dangerous escalation and an assault on Iraqi sovereignty", saying it was committed to ensuring militant attacks on Turkey were not carried out from within its territory. More »

  • Iraq condemns Turkish strikes on PKK as 'assault on sovereignty' Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    The Iraqi government condemned Turkey's assault on Kurdish militants in northern Iraq as "a dangerous escalation and an assault on Iraqi sovereignty". In a statement posted to Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi's website on Tuesday, Baghdad called on Turkey to avoid further escalation and seek a resolution to the crisis. Turkey, which launched near-simultaneous strikes against Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) camps in Iraq and Islamic State fighters in Syria last Friday, intensified its assault on Kurdish militants in northern Iraq overnight. More »

  • Egypt defends Syria's territorial unity after Turkey moves against IS Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    Egypt said that Syria's territorial integrity must be preserved - an apparent sign of its disapproval of Turkey's intervention against militants in Iraq and Syria. The Foreign Ministry said in a statement on Tuesday that Cairo supported combating what it called terrorist groups in Syria. Turkey last week began bombarding targets in Syria linked to the Islamic State jihadist movement and granted access to its air bases to a U.S. led-coalition -- ending a policy which avoided direct intervention in the Syria conflict. More »

  • Iraqi government declares 4-day holiday over severe heatwave Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    BAGHDAD (AP) — Iraq's Council of Ministers has declared a four-day mandatory holiday beginning Thursday as temperatures are set to soar above 50 degrees Celsius (123 degrees Fahrenheit). More »

  • Turkish air strikes hit PKK targets in Turkey, Iraq overnight - PM's of … Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    ISTANBUL (Reuters) - Turkish air strikes hit six Kurdish militant targets in Turkey and northern Iraq overnight, a statement from the prime minister's office said on Wednesday. Turkish authorities have also detained a total of 1,302 people in 39 provinces as part of a crackdown targeting members of Islamic State, the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) and illegal leftist groups, the statement said. (Reporting by Humeyra Pamuk; Editing by Nick Tattersall) More »

  • Iraq-Turkey pipeline attacked by saboteurs, crude flow halted - minister Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    ANKARA (Reuters) - Oil flow on an Iraqi pipeline carrying Kirkuk and Kurdish oil to Turkey's Mediterranean port of Ceyhan has been halted after saboteurs attacked it, Turkish Energy Minister Taner Yildiz said on Wednesday. "The pipeline has been damaged and the flow is halted due to sabotage by terrorists," Yildiz said in a statement, but added that there was no impact so far on the country's oil supply. (Reporting by Orhan Coskun, Writing by Humeyra Pamuk, Editing by Nick Tattersall) More »

  • NATO backs Turkey on Islamic State, some urge peace with Kurds
    NATO backs Turkey on Islamic State, some urge peace with Kurds Wed, Jul 29, 2015

    By Robin Emmott and Nick Tattersall BRUSSELS/ISTANBUL (Reuters) - NATO gave Turkey its full political support in fighting militants in Syria and Iraq at an emergency meeting on Tuesday but several nations urged Ankara not to undermine the Kurdish peace process by using excessive military force. Following a 90-minute meeting in Brussels, Turkey won the backing it sought for stepping up its role in the U.S.-led fight against Islamic State with air strikes. Ankara made no request to its 27 allies for military help and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg noted that it had the second-largest army in the alliance. More »

  • Turkey vs. Islamic State: What they risk as conflict escalates Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    The rapidly intensifying conflict between Turkey and the Islamic State – a confrontation both sides avoided while pursuing higher priority goals in Syria’s civil war – is quickly exposing their respective vulnerabilities. For Ankara, getting involved in the US-led anti-IS coalition, allowing US warplanes to use the Incirlik air base, and carrying out its own airstrikes against IS targets not only marked a policy shift but carries unique risks given its porous borders with Iraq and Syria. Recommended: How much do you know about the Islamic State? More »

  • Iraqi militia leader says U.S. not serious about fighting Islamic State
    Iraqi militia leader says U.S. not serious about fighting Islamic State Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    By Samia Nakhoul NAJAF, Iraq (Reuters) - The head of one of Iraq's fiercest Shi'ite militias called the U.S.-led coalition's campaign against Islamic State ineffective and accused Washington of lacking the will to uproot radical Sunni jihadis controlling large swathes of Iraq and Syria. Qais al-Khazali, leader of Iranian-backed paramilitary group Asaib Ahl al-Haq, said the anti-IS campaign had failed because of an American agenda to redraw the map of the Middle East along new borders. "It does not want to end Daesh (Islamic State). More »

  • Lincoln Chafee targets Hillary Clinton on Iraq War vote Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    Democratic presidential candidate Lincoln Chafee targeted Hillary Clinton in comments to reporters Tuesday, arguing that Democrats should not pick a candidate for president who, like Mrs. Clinton, voted in favor of the Iraq War in 2002. At a Monitor-hosted breakfast for reporters, Mr. Chafee rejected the argument that Clinton’s overwhelming lead in the polls shows that voters don’t agree with him on the importance of the war vote. The RealClearPolitics average of Democratic polls shows Clinton as the choice of 57.5 percent of those surveyed, while Chafee comes in fifth among the five declared candidates at 0.7 percent. More »

  • Peace process with Kurdish militants impossible - Turkey's Erdogan
    Peace process with Kurdish militants impossible - Turkey's Erdogan Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    By Tulay Karadeniz ANKARA (Reuters) - Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan said on Tuesday it was impossible to continue a peace process with Kurdish militants and urged parliament to strip politicians with links to them of immunity from prosecution. Hours after he spoke, the Turkish military said its F-16 fighter jets had bombed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) militants in the southeastern Turkish province of Sirnak, which borders Iraq, in response to an attack on a group of gendarmes. Turkey last week launched air strikes on PKK camps in northern Iraq following a series of attacks on its police officers and soldiers blamed on the Kurdish militant group. More »

  • NATO Backs Turkey Over Fight Against IS
    NATO Backs Turkey Over Fight Against IS Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    NATO has given Turkey its full backing in its attempts to fight Islamic militants in Syria and Iraq with which it shares its borders. But at an emergency meeting officials urged Ankara not to use excessive force which might undermine its peace deal with Kurdish groups, who are also fighting Islamic State. Turkish and US officials also discussed the creation of a safe zone cleared of Islamic State militants in northern Syria. More »

  • Syrian forces, Kurds push Islamic State out of Hasaka city - monitor
    Syrian forces, Kurds push Islamic State out of Hasaka city - monitor Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    Syrian government forces and a Kurdish militia have driven Islamic State fighters out of Hasaka city in Syria's far northeast, a month after the hardline group attacked it, a group monitoring the four-year-old war said on Tuesday. Hasaka is the capital of a strategically important province that borders territory held by Islamic State in Iraq. The Britain-based Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said clashes were continuing in the city's southern outskirts but that Hasaka itself was now free from Islamic State fighters. More »

  • NATO supports Turkey on tackling ISIL and PKK threats
    NATO supports Turkey on tackling ISIL and PKK threats Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    Ankara says alliance may have "duty" to become more involved, days after Turkey launched air strikes in Syria and Iraq. More »

  • NATO chief says all members strongly support Turkey Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said on Tuesday that all its members had expressed strong support for Turkey after an emergency meeting to discuss instability at Turkey's borders with Syria and Iraq. NATO said in a statement it had discussed the threats against Turkey, strongly condemned terrorist attacks against it and stood in strong solidarity with Ankara. All allies expressed their strong support for Turkey. More »

  • Saudi king backs Turkish military action
    Saudi king backs Turkish military action Tue, Jul 28, 2015

    Saudi King Salman has expressed support for Turkey after it launched air strikes against the Islamic State group in Syria and Kurdish militants in Iraq, state media reported on Tuesday. More »