Fighting north of Baghdad, as Kerry calls for inclusive government
Sunday, June 22, 2014 - 01:37
Iraqi government forces push back against ISIL militants with an operation an hour's drive north of Baghdad, while U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry calls on Iraq to find ''inclusive'' government. Mana Rabiee reports.
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AUDIO AS INCOMING The Iraqi army seems to slow the advance of ISIL Islamist fighters on Sunday, with an operation in Udhaim, an hour's drive north of Baghdad. The military releases video showing troops raiding houses, making arrests and seizing what the government says are bomb-making materials. A welcome move, for these locals. (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) RESIDENT OF AREA, SAYING: "The army personnel are brave and it is great to have them here." (SOUNDBITE) (Arabic) RESIDENT OF AREA, SAYING: "The army protects us and we cannot do anything without them." In just two weeks, radical Sunni militants have taken control of large portions of northern Iraq, a majority Shi'ite nation. In Egypt, U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry says Iraq's Kurds, Sunnis and even some Shi'ites are dissatisfied with the leadership of Shi'ite President Nouri al-Maliki. He says the U.S. wants Iraq to find leadership that's inclusive and willing to share power. (SOUNDBITE) (English) U.S. SECRETARY OF STATE JOHN KERRY SAYING: "We will help Iraqi's to complete this transition if they choose it. If they want, they have an opportunity to choose leadership that will represent all of Iraq, a unity government that brings people together and focus on ISIL." The U.S. is sending 300 military advisers to Iraq, in response to the crisis. That prompted Iran's supreme leader, on Sunday, to accuse the U.S. trying to retake control of Iraq. His comments counter earlier speculation that the old adversaries, Washington and Tehran, might cooperate to defend their mutual ally in Baghdad.
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