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Convoy plucks women, children from last IS holdout in Syria

Sinjar - Hundreds of people including women and children were trucked out of the Islamic State group's last Syria redoubt Wednesday, bringing US-backed forces closer to retaking the last sliver of the "caliphate".

Dozens of civilians, fighters quit Syria jihadist holdout: SDF

Sulaymaniyah - US-backed forces said several jihadists and dozens of civilians quit the Islamic State group's last patch of territory in Syria Tuesday, and warned remaining fighters should surrender or face death.

US-backed Syria force demands IS jihadists surrender

Sulaymaniyah - Islamic State group jihadists defending their last scrap of territory in Syria have no choice but to surrender, a Kurdish-led force said on Monday, ahead of a victory declaration expected within days.

Dying days of caliphate in Syria as IS fighters trapped

Sulaymaniyah - Jihadist fighters defending the last dreg of the Islamic State group's "caliphate" Saturday were holed up in half a square kilometre of a village in eastern Syria.

Acting Pentagon chief makes surprise Baghdad visit

Baghdad - Acting Pentagon chief Patrick Shanahan arrived in Baghdad on an unannounced visit Tuesday for talks on the sensitive issue of a continued troop presence following withdrawal from neighbouring Syria.

US-backed Syrian forces battle to take last IS pocket

Sulaymaniyah - Syrian fighters backed by artillery fire from a US-led coalition battled a fierce jihadist counteroffensive Monday as they pushed to retake a last morsel of territory from the Islamic State group.

French guns on Iraq border aim to pin down IS diehards inside Syria

Sulaymaniyah - French howitzer-guns deployed in the Euphrates Valley desert just inside Iraq stand ready to pour fury on Islamic State group diehards in their last holdout across the border in Syria.

Caught in Syria, foreign jihadist suspects may face trial in Iraq

Baghdad - Their home countries don't want them and holding trials in Syria isn't an option: now suspected foreign jihadists could end up facing tough justice over the border in Iraq.

French minister in Iraq warns 'work not over' in IS fight

Baghdad - France's defence minister warned Friday in Baghdad that "the work is not over" in the fight against the Islamic State group, despite the jihadists facing the loss of their last scrap of territory.

By law or force: Iraq's Shiite armed groups vow to oust US troops

Baghdad - Ousting US troops from Iraq despite Donald Trump's vow to stay is now the top goal of pro-Iranian Shiite armed groups. And their leaders say there are only two ways -- by passing a new law, or by force.

Italy's Conte discusses IS 'insurgency' with Iraqi leaders

Baghdad - Italian Prime Minister Giuseppe Conte visited Baghdad on Wednesday, meeting his Iraqi counterpart Adel Abdel Mahdi and President Barham Saleh for talks on the fight against the Islamic State group.

In eastern Syria, remnants of a crumbling IS 'caliphate'

Sulaymaniyah - "The caliphate is here to stay": in the last town it controlled in Syria, the Islamic State group is little more than a slogan on a broken storefront and a dark memory.

In east Syria, civilians escape IS but not death

Sulaymaniyah - Umra Abbas Ammour, 60, dreamt of safety as she and her family fled jihadists in eastern Syria, but hours after reaching US-backed forces her son, daughter and granddaughter were all dead.

Trapped in shrinking Syria holdout, IS turns to human shields

Sulaymaniyah - On a rooftop near the front line with the Islamic State group's collapsing caliphate in eastern Syria, a US-backed fighter and his comrades sip tea as they await orders to restart the battle.

In former IS bastion, displaced Syrians clamour to go home

Sulaymaniyah - In the former jihadist bastion of Hajin in eastern Syria, 50-year-old Khaled Abed shouts at the top of his lungs amid the rubble, asking why he can't go home.

King of Spain visits Iraq, first in 40 years: diplomat

Baghdad - Spain's King Felipe VI on Wednesday visited special forces helping Iraq fight jihadists, during the first trip by a Spanish monarch to the war-ravaged country in four decades, a diplomat said.

Its treasures ruined by IS, Mosul museum hosts modern art

Mosul - Mosul's celebrated museum has not recovered since Islamic State group jihadists ravaged its ancient treasures several years ago, but part of the complex reopened Tuesday to showcase more contemporary art.

In Iraq, political wrangling spawns debate over US troops

Baghdad - From the halls of parliament to the lightning-fast rumour mills of social media, pro-Iran factions are demanding US troops withdraw from Iraq in a challenge to the country's fragile government.

Foreign troops in Iraq cut by a quarter in 2018: PM

Baghdad - Foreign troop numbers in Iraq fell by a quarter during 2018, Prime Minister Adel Abdel Mahdi said, as the fallout fizzled from Washington's announcement it was withdrawing from neighbouring Syria.

Iran foreign minister in Baghdad for talks

Baghdad - Iranian Foreign Minister Mohammad Javad Zarif met with his Iraqi counterpart in Baghdad on Sunday for wide-ranging talks, including on US sanctions against Tehran.
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