Elite Iraqi troops backed by Shiite militias and the US-led coalition are advancing towards Fallajuh. The united front aims to drive out a thousand IS fighters who hold the city. Around 50,000 civilians are trapped in the city.
Government troops have turned to the terrorists' last bastion on the Syrian border, having already recaptured 90 percent of Iraqi land from IS. At the same time, Baghdad was rekindling conflict with the country's Kurds.
Iraq's counter-terrorism forces have taken control of key government buildings in oil-rich Kirkuk. Thousands of Kurds have fled the city, fearing reprisal killings from Iraqi forces and Iranian-backed Shiite militias.
President of the autonomous region of Kurdistan has told parliament he will not seek an extension after his term expires on November 1. The announcement came amid an escalating row with Baghdad over Kurdish independence.
Iraq’s embattled Kurdish regional president Masoud Barzani is facing mounting pressure to quit. Kurdish officials say his presidency won’t be extended and his powers are to be “redistributed.”
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